(Stillwater, Okla.) — A bench warrant has been issued for the arrest of an ex-convict accused with another ex-convict of possessing 30 feet of cut copper wire stolen from Current Electric in Cushing.
Brian Keith Stafford, 41, of Cushing, who had been released on $5,000 bail, failed to appear in court Friday before Special District Judge Katherine Thomas, who then issued a warrant for his arrest.
His co-defendant, Gary Ray Hiltzman, 44, of Cushing, had been free on bond until June 7 when the judge revoked his $5,000 bail and doubled it. Hiltzman remains in jail pending a July 2 court appearance.
The pair were arrested in April after Cushing Police Officer Justin Sappington contacted them while they were walking at Main Place and Seay Avenue, according to an affidavit by Cushing Deputy Police Chief Tully Folden.
“Sappington later seized several pieces of cut copper wire, which Stafford said they found in a dumpster behind the Buckhorn Bar, 122 W. Broadway,” the affidavit said.
Sappington then checked the area but was unable to determine the owner of the copper wire; however, the officer photographed Hiltzman and Stafford, along with a backpack containing a hacksaw, and the copper wire, the affidavit said.
The Cushing deputy police chief conducted a follow-up investigation on April 9 in an attempt to locate the owner of the copper wire, the affidavit said.
After checking various location, the deputy police chief checked a building at 213 N. Cleveland, which is owned by Current Electric, the affidavit said.
Police entered the building through an open window just to the south of which Folden saw a spool of wire matching the recovered wire, the affidavit said.
“I observed the cut end of the wire, which was resting on the spool, along with copper shavings where the wire had been cut,” Folden wrote in his affidavit.
“I also matched the information on the copper sleeve of the recovered copper wire to that of the spool at 213 N. Cleveland, which matched,” Folden said.
A Current Electric employee said that no one had permission to enter the building or to take anything from it, including the copper wire, the affidavit said.
That same day, “Sgt. Ford and Ofc. Watts inteviewed Hiltzman at the police department. During the interview, Hiltzman admitted that he and Stafford entered the building located at 213 N. Cleveland where they cut and later took several pieces of copper wire,” the affidavit alleged.
Stafford was convicted of child endangerment in the Drumright division of Creek County district court in 2003, of methamphetamine possession in Payne County in 2005, and of drunk driving in 2006 in Payne County, state Department of Corrections records show.
Stafford was released from prison in 2008, after serving one year and eight months of a five-year prison term for drunk driving. He remains on probation on his other convictions, DOC records show.
Hiltzman was convicted of second-degree burglary, attempted second-degree burglary, failure to comply with a personal recognizance bond, knowingly concealing stolen property, car theft and second-degree burglary, all in 1993 in Tulsa County, DOC records show.
Hiltzman was also convicted of carrying things into prison to aid escape in 1995 in Tulsa County and released from prison in 1997, DOC records show.