Sheriff: Local man charged for ATM theft, several break-ins

Staff Writer
Stephenville Empire-Tribune
William Gregory Owens Jr.

William Gregory Owens Jr., 29, was charged on Thursday, Aug. 27, for breaking into several businesses and for stealing an ATM machine in Erath County.

According to a Facebook post made by Erath County Informer, Owens was driving a white Ford pickup in the early morning of Aug. 26. He rammed into the back doors of Rangler’s Convenience Store then, dismantled their ATM machine. An officer spotted the pickup driving down Lingleville Road. A high-speed pursuit began and officers reported they lost sight of the vehicle after it drove into a field. The vehicle was located abandoned in the Bosque River near the soccer fields and a search of the area began.

On Wednesday, Aug. 26, information was posted by Erath County Sheriff’s Office on Facebook asking the public for help identifying the burglary suspect who had broken into Rangler’s, as well as B&B Country Store, along with several other buildings and businesses in the early morning of Aug. 26.

“Erath County Sherrif’s office was able to recover the truck with all stolen goods,” wrote B&B Country Store on their Facebook page. “Criminal fled on foot in stephenville after hitting 2 other stores.”

After law enforcement received numerous anonymous tips saying the burglar was Owens, the Erath County Sheriff’s Office, Stephenville Police Department, Dublin Police Department and Texas DPS conducted a warrant service on County Road 304 where Owens was taken into custody. He was arrested on an outstanding warrant.

“Owens was questioned by Investigators and after other interviews it was determined that Owens would be charged with Theft of an ATM Machine. More charges are pending for Owens,” said Erath County Sheriff Matt Coates.

According to Erath County Sheriff’s Office jail log, Owens’ bond amount was a total of $85,000 for the two theft charges.

He also has previous charges dating back to 2011, including assault and two additional theft charges.

Stephenville Police Department, Stephenville Fire Department and Erath County Sheriff's Office working in the early morning hours to recover a stolen vehicle and ATM. [COURTESY STEPHENVILLE POLICE DEPARTMENT FACEBOOK PAGE].