Man arrested in connection with stolen telecommunications equipment

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WASHINGTON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - A quick turnaround of events on July 8 led to the arrest of Carl Thomas Edmondson III. He is charged with burglary of an unoccupied structure and grand theft.

Deputies say $200,000 worth of telecommunications equipment was recovered. (WJHG/WECP)

On July 2, Washington County Sheriff Kevin Crews received a phone call from a CenturyLink Corporate Security employee, reporting several thefts. Then on July 8, there was another report of theft from an AT&T employee.

"We were able to get a vehicle identified, it was a Ford F-250 truck. Through some investigative leads, we were able to piece together a tag number on that truck," said Sheriff Crews.

Investigators say this piece of information led them to a person of interest in Bay County. Edmondson was identified as the suspect.

Upon the execution of a search warrant, deputies say they discovered $200,000 worth of telecommunications equipment.

Christie Mason, Director of Government Affairs at CenturyLink, says the equipment is used to deliver high-speed internet and telephone service. It's believed that Edmondson knows how the equipment works.

"Me and you normally wouldn't know what this stuff does, you know, and the value of some of this stuff," said Sheriff Crews. "So he does have some background and knowledge of what this stuff means."

WSCO also credits the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Dale County Sheriff’s Office, and Ozark Police Department for their assistance in the case.

As of now, investigators don't know the motive, but Mason believes it was stolen to be resold.

Edmondson is currently resisting extradition to Florida. Sheriff Crews says the investigation is ongoing and he anticipates more charges.

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