Keep The Barn Door Shut-And Locked!!

| September/October 2000

4252 Dunstan Court, Stone Mountain, Georgia 30083-2443

With heavy heart I find it necessary to warn my fellow club members of the intrusion of some 'bad apples' into our otherwise God O1' Boy (and Gal) antique engine hobby.

Checking my shop on a recent Sunday afternoon, I found someone had removed a 1? HP Z Fairbanks-Morse and a 3-5 HP LB IHC engine from the back of my pickup and dragged them toward the edge of my property. Most of you know me as having BIG engines- certainly the non-carrying kind-but somehow, someone had uncovered the only small engines stored in the yard.

If you have ever been to my shop or seen photos, you know that this in of itself, took some lengthy reconnaissance. Fortunately, for whatever reason, the engines had been left hidden between two vehicles and covered with a 4x8 sheet of plywood.

There was only one acceptable course of action-camp out with a 12 gauge shotgun and borrowed cell phone and see who came back for the engines. Sunday night passed uneventfully except for the cold-yes, even in Georgia. Monday night seemed destined to be a repeat of the first night. I had resolved to stay at least one week but thoughts of 'you dumb old fool, what are you doing out here freezing your butt off' drifted through my numb mind. The situation suddenly changed when a newish, dark colored Ford extended cab F250 pickup suddenly eased into view about 12:30 a.m., paused a moment as it picked out the engines in its headlights, turned, and backed up to load the engines. A hasty 911 call and a few anxious moments later, the bad apple was in police custody and the engines were saved for another show.

A search of the pickup revealed a loaded Glock 40 cal handgun with night sights, a pellet rifle (apparently to quietly take care of any junkyard dogs), loading ramps, hand trucks, and work gloves. The 44-year-old white male lived three counties away, near Gainesville, Georgia. Attempted burglary charges are currently awaiting court action. Remember, keep the barn door shut and locked!!


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