BUCKHANNON — One local man now faces a felony charge after his employer caught him in the act on Thursday, August 4.
According to court documentation, Buckhannon Police Sergeant Theron Caynor responded to A & S Towing after the owner called the Upshur County 911 Center to report a theft in progress. The owner stated that an employee, later identified as 25-year-old Justin Keith Knicely of Buckhannon, was allegedly in the process of stealing a catalytic converter off a 2006 Jeep Liberty that was parked at the company tow lot, located at 38 A Plus Rental Drive in Upshur County.
The criminal complaint stated that when officers arrived on scene the defendant was allegedly caught by the previously mentioned vehicle with a reciprocating saw. Upon investigating, Sgt. Caynor found the converter to be in the side toolbox of the defendant’s truck.
The complaint also explained that the owner did not give the defendant permission to cut any part off any of the vehicles on the property. When officers spoke to the defendant, Knicely allegedly stated that the office manager told him to remove the convertor and to bring it to him. After talking to the manager, officers learned this was not the case.
In a video statement, a witness who was at the location explained to officers that the defendant allegedly stated he was going to cut the convertor off for gas money. The replacement value of the part was $4,755.00.
The defendant now faces a felony charge of Grand Larceny. Knicely is currently being housed at Tygart Valley Regional Jail on a $15,000 cash or surety bond.