Man catches thief in the act

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 20, 2011

ROCKWELL — A Rockwell homeowner gave a break-in suspect quite a surprise when he stopped him in his tracks early Tuesday morning, authorities reported today.
Charles Strickland, of Forest Street, called 911 to report a man was entering an outbuilding and loading things into a van. It turns out Strickland knew the man, David Oneal Plott, 50, of 102 Sunfish Terrace, and was talking to him while he was in the van, trying to drive away, the report said.
When officers arrived, they reported seeing the silver van pull away from the home, but Plott stopped for officers and pulled into a nearby yard.
Strickland identified Plott as the man he saw going into the outbuilding. He noticed the outbuilding’s door was open and the lock was ripped off.
Found in Plott’s van were a radiator, condenser and battery. Everything was returned to Strickland.
Plott was charged with felony breaking and entering, felony possession of stolen goods and was served a warrant on an outstanding charge of misdemeanor breaking and entering. He was given a $16,000 secured bond.
The Rowan County Sheriff’s Office said scrap metal theft is still one of the biggest crimes committed in the county. Deputies urge anyone who sees suspicious behavior to contact them at 704-216-8700. You can also contact Salisbury-Rowan Crimestoppers at 1-866-925-5245.