Officials have recovered more items tied to a farm equipment theft ring that involved a number of John Deere lawn mowers.
According to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, television station WAFB, officials have recovered $440,000 in stolen equipment, which includes 12 John Deere lawn mowers. In all, three people were arrested in connection with the crimes. Homer G. Hess, 40, and Devon Lipson, 18, were arrested after authorities set up a sting operation.
Their apprehension led officials to Steve Ginter, who was arrested by the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation as the alleged ring leader of the operation.
Along with the John Deere lawn mowers, the three have been accused of stealing trailers, all-terrain vehicles, and a pickup truck.
Along with the Louisiana State Police and the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, a number of other law enforcement agencies were involved in the case, including the Mississippi Agricultural Theft Bureau, the Albany, Louisiana Police Department, the Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office and the National Insurance Crime Bureau.
Some farmers are trying to band together in order to avoid becoming the victims of theft. For example, law enforcement officials in California have set up an email newsletter for farmers in the state that carries reports about stolen farm equipment. The intent is to have farmers keep their eyes open for the pilfered equipment.