Man accused of attempting to steal catalyic converters from Almond farm

Schae Casey, 30 pleads not guilty to theft and criminal damage to property.
Schae Casey, 30 pleads not guilty to theft and criminal damage to property.(Portage County Jail)
Published: Jul. 14, 2021 at 3:47 PM CDT
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ALMOND, Wis. (WSAW) - A 30-year-old Coloma man has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor theft charges after authorities say they caught him attempting to steal catalytic converters.

Schae Casey is free on a $2,000 signature bond.

A Portage County farmer contacted the sheriff’s department after numerous thefts at the property. Detectives installed motion-triggered surveillance cameras. Just before midnight on April 28, deputies responded after the cameras indicated activity. Investigators said the camera showed a person holding a Sawzall near one of the farm’s trucks.

Several deputies responded to the property. There, they located an unoccupied truck with a Sawzall on the passenger seat. A perimeter was set up and a K-9 unit from Wood County was requested to assist. The suspect was spotted with the use of night vision equipment. Approximately two hours later, a vehicle was arrived at the scene and parked near the suspect vehicle. Court documents state Casey and another person arrived at the farm. Casey told investigators he ran out of gas and that’s why his vehicle was in that location.

Investigators placed Casey in a squad and again asked why he was at the farm. Casey reportedly said he intended to steal tires and a portion of exhaust pipe for his own vehicle.

Detectives say Casey was likely at the farm to steal catalytic converters. Court documents say a cut found on a van was made behind the catalytic converter, not the section of a bent pipe he said he wanted to take. Authorities said surveillance video captured him underneath a Ford truck, but that vehicle was already missing a catalytic converter. Investigators further noted the parts Casey said he was there to take would have not fit on his two vehicles.

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