A Potosi man is facing felony charges this week after allegedly breaking into a Washington County Road and Bridge district facility and stealing nearly $30,000 worth of property last month.
Brandon Courtois, 42, was charged Wednesday in Washington County with second-degree burglary, stealing ($25,000 or more), first-degree tampering with a motor vehicle, and first-degree property damage.
According to a probable cause statement from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Courtois unlawfully forced entry into the Washington County Road and Bridge District Two building, located on Highway 21 on Oct. 21.
The report states that Courtois, along with another man, forced their way into the district facility by tearing down a fence on the north side of the property, causing $800 in damages.
The two men then reportedly loaded $17,750 worth of items that belong to Washington County into a red 1999 Ford F-350 with a black utility bed.
The report states that Courtois and the other man cut the facility’s locked gate and stole the truck with all the stolen items in the truck bed.
The total value of the items stolen is $27,750, according to court documents.
During an interview with law enforcement, Courtois reportedly admitted to breaking into the district facility and taking the items.
According to the statement, the man also admitted cutting the lock on the gate and driving the truck out of the district property.
Courtois reportedly drove the truck to a location and traded all the stolen items. The man then left the truck abandoned near the 11,200 block of Route T, according to the report.
Courtois was booked at the Washington County Jail Tuesday, and an $80,000 bond was set in the case.
The criminal complaint filed Wednesday states that Courtois had been free on a $50,000 bond after being charged in March for possession of a firearm as a convicted felon. The complaint states that Courtois failed to appear for a court hearing in that case earlier this spring.
According to court records, the man also failed to appear in Washington County Court twice while on bond for animal abuse charges in 2008. He has prior convictions for first-degree robbery and manufacturing a controlled substance in Jefferson County, as well as past convictions for drug trafficking in Washington County.
The man could face more than 10 years in prison if convicted of the charges filed this week.
The report does not identify the other suspect or state whether he has been charged.
Bobby Radford is a reporter for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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