Charges filed in school theft

A 19-year-old Elkins man was arrested this week for allegedly breaking into North Elementary School in December 2012.

Cody Tyler Pudder was charged with breaking and entering a building other than a dwelling, a felony, Tuesday in Randolph County Magistrate Court.

According to the criminal complaint filed in the magistrate clerk’s office, on Jan. 3, Cpl. C.D. Cross with the Elkins Police Department responded to a breaking-and-entering and petit larceny complaint at North Elementary School in Elkins.

When Cross arrived at the school, Principal Cynthia Bodkin told him that upon returning to school from Christmas break, the school groundskeeper noticed that someone had cut the padlock off the door to the school’s outbuilding. The groundskeeper said a red MTD Yard Machines brand 26-inch snowblower, two snow shovels and a 5-gallon gas can containing gas had been removed from the building, the complaint states.

Cross noted that the snowblower is worth $800, while the estimated value of the shovels and gas can is $50 apiece, according to the complaint.

On March 6, Pudder reported to the Elkins Police Department and gave Cross a statement in which he admitted to using bolt cutters on Dec. 22, 2012, to cut the lock off the outbuilding and steal the snowblower, shovels and gas can.

Pudder told Cross he’d sold the items for $350 to several people from Maryland, but could provide no further information about the buyers’ identities.

As of presstime, Pudder remained in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail on a $10,000 property or surety bond set by Magistrate Rob Elbon.

The penalty for breaking and entering is confinement in the state penitentiary for one to 10 years.

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