Two Oklahoma men were arrested April 11 in Beckham County and charged with larceny of domestic animals and knowingly concealing stolen property in a case involving 22 head of cattle stolen in Texas and Oklahoma. TSCRA Special Ranger Ben Eggleston led the multi-state investigation that involved multiple law enforcement agencies.
The first theft suspect, Colby Ryan Smith, 25, Carter, Okla., also had an outstanding warrant out of Wheeler County, Texas, for theft of livestock. The second suspect, Ryan James Guidry, 26, Sayre, Okla., was arrested and charged with larceny of domestic animals.
Eggleston said the investigation began in October 2015 when 8 head of cattle were reported missing from a ranch in Wheeler County, Texas. The investigation revealed Smith turned 8 head of cattle out on a Beckham County rancher’s pasture without permission. The cattle were branded with an E on their side, making them easy to trace back to the original owner in Wheeler County. These cattle were recovered and returned to the victim.
In November 2015, Eggleston received a call from the Woodward Livestock Auction with the information that Guidry had brought in 10 heifers to be sold and was waiting in the parking lot for his check. The auction employee was suspicious because Guidry was waiting outside the facility and calling to pick up a check for the cattle that had not sold yet. Eggleston then received a call from a second victim that had 14 head of cattle missing, which Eggleston realized matched the description of the cattle Guidry had taken to the livestock auction.
Authorities were able to positively identify the cattle as 10 of the 14 stolen head.
Further investigation revealed the cattle Guidry took to the sale were allegedly stolen by Smith. Guidry told authorities that Smith raised the cattle and they belonged to him. Both suspects were arrested Monday and taken to jail in Beckham County, Okla. Additional charges are expected to be filed against these suspects.
TSCRA would like to thank the following authorities and agencies for working as a team throughout this investigation: Agent Paul Cornett, Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Captain Brandyce Rozell, Beckham County Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff Scott Jay, Beckham County Sheriff’s Office, Wheeler County Texas Sheriff’s Office, Washita County Oklahoma Sheriff’s Office, Roger Mills Oklahoma Sheriff’s Office, Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Oklahoma District 2 Narcotic Task Force and Oklahoma Highway Patrol.