Newspaper ads offering a reward for leads on stolen cattle and an amateur attempt at re-branding cattle helped Oklahoma officers find an alleged cattle rustler.
Six Limousin-breed heifers were taken from a pasture southwest of Maysville, Okla. on March 31. Without any leads, the owner, Ryan Somers, placed ads in area newspapers offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.
The Oklahoman reports Edward Heath McCoy attempted to sell cattle matching the description of the missing animals to a man in a neighboring county who saw Somers’ ad and reported McCoy. Police located the animals in a makeshift corral along with a fire pit and tools used to cover the existing cattle brand.
McCoy was arrested at his residence and faces a felony count of knowingly concealing stolen property and five felony counts of fraudulent branding. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 55 years in prison and a $5,500 fine.
Garvin County Sheriff Larry Rhodes told the Oklahoman the branding was not skillfully done and would have raised red flags, had McCoy taken the animals to a livestock auction.