Alert officer discovers Mississippi men reportedly in process of stealing thousands from building supply, equipment rental businesses

Published 9:08 am Thursday, March 23, 2023

An alert Natchez police officer is being credited with catching burglars and recovering equipment stolen during the early morning hours on Monday from Stine Lumber Company, 108 U.S. 61 South, and from its neighbor, Delta Rentals, 102 U.S 61 South.

Natchez Police Chief Cal Green said at about 1:20 a.m. Monday, the officer noticed a vehicle leaving the parking lot of Delta Rentals and heading toward Adams County.

Officers ran the tag, and it came back to owner Corey Latham, 30, 256 A Quitman Road, Natchez.

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At about 2 a.m., the same officer saw a person run across U.S. 61 from Stine’s parking lot, headed toward Days Inn. That person got into the same vehicle whose tag the officer had run earlier.

The NPD officer made contact with the two subjects in the vehicle, who told them they had run out of gas and were waiting for a gas station to open.

The officer noticed an abundance of tools inside and in the bed of Latham’s truck.

Shortly after leaving the Days Inn, while patrolling the area, the officer noticed a cut in the fence at Delta Rental as well as one in the fence at Stine. He also noticed a variety of merchandise belonging to Stine sitting outside the fence line.

The officer then detained Latham and his passenger, Jon Adams, 51, 1302 Westwood Road, Natchez.

Management of Stine Lumber provided an invoice with the items found, which totaled $2,019.94, as well as video footage of Latham taking items that matched those found by the officer on the property.

Latham and Adams were both charged with burglary of a business and are each being held on $50,000 bond.

Green said Latham worked for Stine Lumber for about two weeks.

“My guys are the best. They are working their hearts out and doing the best they can for the city. Even though we are short-handed and they are tired, they are doing a great job, and I am extremely proud of them for that,” she said.