Loudon men face charges in burglary of IRS investigator's vehicle

By Jamie Satterfield knoxnews.com
 
Two Loudon County men are facing federal charges in connection with the burglary of an IRS criminal investigator's government vehicle.

Jacob Ryan Johnson, 20, and James Richard Orr Jr., age not immediately available, are set to be arraigned today in U.S. District Court on charges of possession of stolen firearms and possession of a sawed-off shotgun.

According to a complaint filed by U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Agent Bernard "Bernie" Waggoner, the government-issued vehicle of an IRS criminal investigator was burglarized March 21. Taken were a shotgun, a sawed-off shotgun, a police scanner, handcuffs, ammunition, "entry tools," a pneumatic ram, ammunition, a bulletproof vest, flashlights and the investigator's badges.

The investigator is not identified in the complaint nor was the location of the burglary listed.

The complaint indicates the car was parked in the investigator's neighborhood and burglarized in a spree of similar crimes in that neighborhood.

The next day, the Lenoir City Police Department discovered the shotguns inside the vehicle of Nicholas Young, who had been involved in an auto accident, the complaint stated. Young told officers he bought the shotguns from Orr, who was his neighbor.

ATF agents confronted Orr, who admitted he was with Johnson when the guns were sold to Young but "falsely claimed to law enforcement that he did not know that the shotguns were stolen," Waggoner wrote.

The agents tracked down Johnson in Cookeville, Tenn. He agreed to a search of his vehicle, inside of which agents found the investigator's flashlights, according to the complaint. Johnson refused to be interviewed and was arrested, Waggoner wrote.

Interviewed a second time, Orr led agents to the home of Justin Carter, the complaint stated. Carter admitted buying the investigator's ammunition from Johnson and allowing him to stash at his home other items stolen both from the investigator and other victims in the investigator's neighborhood, according to the complaint.

The agents did not find the investigator's bulletproof vest and badges, however.

"Carter stressed that he told Johnson that Johnson could not stash (the vest and badges) at Carter's house," Waggoner wrote.

Orr has been released pending trial. Johnson remained jailed Tuesday. A detention hearing is set for Johnson today.

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4/18/12