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Tip leads to discovery of ‘chop shop’

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Investigators say the truck discovered in this garage on Rebon Maddox Road was reported stolen out of Barnesville. It was being dismantled in what authorities described as a “chop shop” operation.

Special Photo/// Investigators say the truck discovered in this garage on Rebon Maddox Road was reported stolen out of Barnesville. It was being dismantled in what authorities described as a “chop shop” operation.

Butts County sheriff’s investigators say they uncovered a “chop shop” operating inside a garage at a home on Rebon Maddox Road last week.

Acting on a tip from Henry County police regarding a truck reported stolen from Barnesville, deputies went to 298 Rebon Maddox Road on Monday, Jan. 23, Butts County Sheriff’s Col. Larry Mooney said in a press release.

He said they discovered a truck matching the description of the stolen vehicle, and got a warrant to search the residence.

“Investigators discovered that the truck was in fact the same one stolen from Barnesville,” Mooney said in the statement. “The V.I.N. (vehicle identification number) plate had been removed and the truck was being disassembled.”

Mooney said investigators also found tools commonly used by so-called chop shops that dismantle stolen vehicles, which are then typically sold piece by piece. “The main body of the truck was inside the garage of the address and it appeared that there were several parts of other vehicles that were also on the scene,” he added. He said the home is listed in the name of Randall Aaron Couey of Jackson. “Investigators also discovered that electricity was being stolen from the house next-door in order to provide the ‘chop shop’ operation with power,” Mooney said in the statement.

Mooney said Monday in an e-mail that a warrant was issued for Couey’s arrest, but he remained at large.