MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Mo. – Authorities say a suspect used some bizarre techniques to steal large amounts of gas from one rural Missouri gas station on several occasions.
The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports the suspect was arrested during the early-morning hours of Oct. 4. The suspect’s name, age, or gender have not been disclosed, but authorities say the recent arrest is part of a months-long investigation.
Investigators say the suspect targeted a BP gas station at the junction of Highway 19 and Highway 94 near McKittrick, Missouri.
According to the sheriff’s office, the suspect cut off the gas cap locks to access large underground tanks. After that, the suspect pumped gasoline directly from the storage tanks, sometimes storing it in a 50-gallon plastic drum.
For nearly half a year, deputies reviewed many of these schemes on security cameras. While investigating, deputies collected information on a suspect vehicle and when the suspect might try to target the gas station once again.
Earlier this month, deputies were able to stop the suspect vehicle near the gas station. Deputies searched the vehicle and found a 50-gallon plastic drum strapped inside the vehicle and a long fuel hose. They also reported a strong odor of gasoline from inside the vehicle.
The suspect was not only linked to the gas station thefts, but also had a suspended driver’s license and an active warrant out of Warren County, per the sheriff’s office. The suspect was booked into the Montgomery County Jail on charges of property damage, stealing and tampering with property, in addition to several driving offenses.