Burglary suspect Michael Wells is searched after his surrender to Dyer County Sheriff's deputies. He and a 14-year-old juvenile had fled into the woods off of Great River Road after U.S. Army Corps of Engineers workers attempted to hold them until law enforcement arrived after they were suspected of burglarizing and vandalizing a bulldozer.
Workers with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had to delay work on the big levee at Great River Road on Friday after several suspects burglarized a bulldozer they were using to repair a portion of the levee.
The three suspects, Michael Wells, 24, and two male juveniles ages 14 and 15, were reportedly seen by the workers around 11:30 a.m. on Friday near one of their dozers on the Great River Road just north of I-155. The workers stopped and detained the suspects while they contacted the Dyer County Sheriff's Dept. While waiting on deputies, the 15-year-old suspect left the scene in a pickup truck while Wells and the 14-year-old ran west into the woods. The 15-year-old was apprehended soon thereafter by deputies in Finley.
Dyer County Sheriff Jeff Box and his officers began searching the area west of Great River Road, where the suspects had fled from. The 14-year-old's mother also joined in the search and began calling his name.
As deputies closed in on the two around 2:05 p.m., the suspects came out of the treeline along the road and began waving their arms in the direction of the mother's van. A trucker passing by them alerted State Gazette Editor Jason Cannon, who notified deputies. The suspects disappeared back into the treeline, but then came out and surrendered to the deputies as they approached them. The two were scraped and bloodied from running through thorns in the woods and Wells had a gash on his head while the 14-year-old was missing a shoe. Wells was seen by a paramedic at the scene for his injury. The 14-year-old was turned over to the custody of his mother and went back into the woods to retrieve a fire extinguisher they had stolen and brought it back to deputies. He pointed out to deputies that Wells had sprayed all of its contents out while they were in the woods.
This is the bulldozer the suspects reportedly stole a radio and a fire extinguisher from and cut wires in an attempt to steal the battery. The dozer was being used by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to repair a section of the levee on Great River Road.
Michael Wells and a male juvenile stand along Great River Road before going back into a treeline and ultimately surrendering to Dyer County Sheriff's deputies. The two were suspects in a burglary that occurred several hundred yards down the road.
The workers were able to repair the dozer and get it back working.
Wells was charged with burglary, vandalism, theft of property, and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. He is being held in the Dyer County Jail until he can go before a judge. The 15-year-old was charged with driving without a license and he and the 14-year-old are facing other charges.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have been working in Dyer County repairing several sections of the levee along Great River Road after portions had grown weak and slid out.