Burglary in Progress Stopped by Property owner; Tractor Recovered in Separate Incident

Information  gathered from Clay County Sheriff Jim Studdard:

On Friday, April 3, 2020 around 1:00 PM, Clay County Sheriff’s Office responded to a possible burglary in process at a residence on County Rd 7.

When deputies arrived, property owners had a suspect being detained. The property owner stated that he was outside and saw a red Ford Explorer in his neighbor’s driveway, which was a vacant house, that he had been keeping a watch over. The property owner made contact with a white female and he asked her what she was doing, the female said she that her husband had gone into the woods to use the bathroom. And she was waiting on him. The property owner then began walking toward the vacant home and encountered the suspect, who was later identified at Christopher Kirk, of Huntsville, carrying bolt cutters and some copper wiring.

Christopher Kirk

After making contact with the suspect, a verbal altercation ensued between the property owners and Kirk, who attempted to flee the scene in his vehicle. In his rush to leave, Kirk hit the one of the property owner’s vehicles. That’s when Kirk threatened them with a screwdriver. When this happened, one of the property owners then held the suspect at gunpoint until the deputies arrived.

The investigators later determined that Kirk had been taking the bolt cutters and cutting the copper wiring/tubing out of the vacant house. It was also discovered that there were also a couple of storage buildings around the vacant home that looked like the padlocks had been cut off or missing as well.

Kirk was arrested and charged with Burglary in the Third Degree and Theft of Property in the Fourth Degree. He also has a he remains incarcerated at the Clay County jail at this time.

In addition to this attempted burglary, investigators also responded to a call on Hwy 148 on April 7th where a tractor and other items had been taken. Investigators were able to later locate the tractor, along with other missing property in a wooded area not far from the residence. All items were recovered and returned to the owner. This is still an ongoing investigation.

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