ST. HELENS, Ore. (KOIN) – Two people have been indicted in what’s being described as a very significant theft operation that occurred in Columbia County.
The sheriff’s office tells us that Andrew Lee Jones and Linda Marie Strawn were both arrested in May 2016.
This week, Sheriff Jeff Dickerson said a grand jury indicted the couple on multiple felony crimes.
According to court records, Jones is charged with a total of 40 felonies and 1 misdemeanor. The charges include second-degree burglary, first-degree theft, mail theft, and ID theft. Strawn is charged with 38 felonies and 1 misdemeanor. She faces the same charges as Jones.
Between Jan. 2016 and March 2016, a St. Helens area homeowner reported at least three different burglaries at his vacant property in the 60000-block of Barger Road.
The property has a house, barn, and several out buildings that stored tools, personal documents, and collectible memorabilia.
According to court documents items that were stolen included medication, lock boxes, personal documents, a book, keys, coins an antique razor, money, collected stamps, an antique model car, checkbooks and U.S. Army patches. The value of everything taken was more than $1,000.
Dickerson said a breakthrough in the case was made when a deputy assisted a St. Helens police officer during a traffic stop of Jones. Evidence was found inside the vehicle that prompted police to get a search warrant. Inside the vehicle seized officials seized heroin, methamphetamine, psychedelic mushrooms, and stolen property.
The investigation led officials to Strawn and they executed a search warrant at homes in the 200 block of South 16th Street and 900 block of Plymouth Street. They also searched her vehicle. Officers recovered stolen property from the burglaries on Barger Road as well as several burglaries from different storage units at a private storage facility, according to the sheriff. Officials also recovered stolen mail. The mail had been addressed to and from people living on Sauvie Island all the way to Rainier.
Dickerson said the investigation and more arrests and charges could be filed
One of the people involved in the case was identified as Jason Edward Johnson. He is currently on parole for second-degree robbery, according to Dickerson. There is an outstanding warrant for his arrest from the Oregon Parole Board.
It is expected that Johnson will face theft and burglary charges in the near future.