The missing propellers are valued at $73,000 and were being sold by a trio of thieves
On December 15, 2022, three suspects related to the missing boat propeller case were arrested. Belonging to a propeller theft ring in Florida, they were involved in stealing high-end boat propellers worth nearly $73,000.
The case of the missing propellers
The St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office has busted a propeller theft ring in Florida that stole 61 boat propellers valued at almost $73,000.
The news release by the sheriff’s office mentioned that the suspects were trying to sell parts from a stolen Volvo Penta Outdrive to a scrap yard in the locality. The stolen property was reported by the victim on December 13.
Fueling drug use from stolen boat parts
According to Sheriff Ken, the propeller thieves sold the parts for pennies to buy drugs. In this case, each propeller was worth $1,200 but was sold at just $126. The three arrested suspects were taken into custody near the 3200 block of Avenue D, at a Fort Pierce recycling center where people buy metals.
Investigators say that the propeller thefts happened between September 22 and December 14. Only 61 propellers have been recovered for now, and all three suspects are from Fort Pierce (two men and one woman). The men, thirty-nine-year-old Richard Dale Gillispie and forty-five-year-old Christopher Ward Summerlin, are facing stolen property and false information charges, while the woman, thirty-three-year-old Michelle Stephanie Gillispie, has been taken into custody for burglary and grand theft.
The investigators are looking into this case to uncover more details.
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