FEMA trailers stolen from Redding recovered, 2 arrested
REDDING — Two stolen FEMA trailers and a stolen pickup truck were recovered last Friday, after Redding PD began investigating the thefts of the trailers early Friday morning, Dec. 28. The two trailers, which were both intended for Camp Fire victims and stolen from Reddingwood Mobile Home and RV Park, were valued at about $30,000 each, according to Redding PD.
Two men were arrested in relation to the trailer and truck thefts, and two additional subjects were arrested for outstanding warrants during the theft investigation, said officials.
LEADING THE SCNS HEADLINES:
Redding PD began investigating the early morning thefts around 6:40 a.m., after a citizen called SHASCOM to report the theft of a travel trailer from the RV park. During their initial investigation, officers learned a second trailer was also stolen from the RV park overnight.
Officers learned the person who called 911 “awoke to the sound of metal scraping outside their residence on Westside Rd.,” and observed a white, Chevy SUV dragging one of the trailers off the lot, Redding Police Sgt. Brian Cole explained after the stolen trailers were recovered.
Investigating officers soon learned the Federal Emergency Management Agency had set up the two, brand new, Forrest Rivers brand trailers at the RV park a few days earlier, “for housing of victims of the Camp Fire,” said Cole.
Redding officers coordinated with a FEMA Security Director and quickly developed information that one of the trailers was being pulled to a Millville area residence in the vicinity of Highway 44 near Palo Cedro. The other trailer was determined to be at a residence on Albatross Way, in Bella Vista.
California Highway Patrol sent a helicopter from their aviation unit to locate the trailer in the Millville area and aviation members soon spotted the trailer, which was being towed by a white Chevy SUV to a residence on Old Highway 44 Dr.
“Redding Police Department, with the assistance of several California Highway Patrol Officers, made contact with multiple people at the home” where the stolen trailer had been taken, explained Cole. Officials quickly identified Wayne Jerome Bergman, 58, of Bella Vista, as the driver of the SUV, according to Cole, who said Bergman admitted to stealing the trailer from the RV Park.
“Two additional males at the home were found to have warrants for their arrest,” Cole explained, but officers determined they were not involved in the theft of the trailers.
After recovering the first stolen trailer, Redding PD patrol officers and members of the department’s Neighborhood Police Unit, along with CHP Air Operations, responded to the second residence on Albatross Way, in Bella Vista, where they quickly located the second stolen trailer on the home’s property.
“The home owner identified Wayne Bergman as his brother and stated the trailer showed up at his residence sometime during the morning hours,” according to Cole.
While officers were still at the Albatross Way home recovering the second stolen trailer, they observed what Cole described as “a suspicious truck” arrive at the residence. “Believing that the truck could be at the location to pick up the trailer,” officers contacted the truck’s occupants, according to Cole.
The driver, later identified as Zachary Adam Crouchley, 40, of Bella Vista, was determined to be on probation for possession of an illegal weapon. Further investigation revealed the truck Crouchley was driving had been reported stolen by the Tulare Police Department.
Both Bergman and Crouchley were eventually booked into Shasta County Jail on a variety of charges related to the trailer and truck thefts, as well as violation of probation.
FEMA personnel later responded to the two homes to recover the stolen trailers.
Anyone with information about this investigation is encouraged to contact Redding Police Sgt. Brian Cole at (530) 225-4200. Callers can refer to incident file number 18R091554 and can remain anonymous.
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Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.
Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)
During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.
Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.
Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.