Shelby Co. officials seeking public's help in string of burglaries on Jan. 2

SHELBY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Suspected burglars hit about 10 East Texas businesses in one night. Authorities in Shelby County say the suspects kicked-in front and back doors to several businesses and churches on January 2.

Now investigators are looking to the public for help in solving this case.

East Texas News traveled to Shelby County to get more details on the burglaries.

Many business owners in Shelby County arrived at work last week only to find their doors kicked in and windows broken.

"There have been several businesses in the Shelby County area that have been hit from Huxley to Joaquin to other outlying areas of the county," Gerald Huddleston, the director city operations for Huxley, said.

Huddleston's building was one of the many burglarized in Huxley.

"I would say they were looking for cash or something that they could pick up and turn into cash quickly or possibly trade for some type of drug," Huddleston said.

Shelby County Sheriff Willis Blackwell agreed with Huddleston's assessment.

"A lot of this, I think in my opinion, the burglaries that we're having are just dope related," Blackwell said. "That's all it is; they're trying to get enough money to buy enough dope to make it. And they're not really in there to steal certain things."

Ten different businesses and churches were burglarized, but things were stolen from four places.

"Right now the only locations we have is the Samson Oil Field in Huxley, Texas," John Pope, an investigator with the Shelby County Sheriff's Office, said. "They gotten two locations there and then we had a location on FM 2665 where a four-wheeler was taken."

In addition, thousands of dollars worth of alligator boots were stolen from Harvey's Landing in Huxley.

All the burglaries happened the same night, and Pope said he has an idea about the suspects.

I believe that the people are going to be from the area because the locations," Pope said. "I mean you have to live down there to know the places you know that was broken into."

Pope said they have two people of interest. Right now, they're running a fingerprint from one of the crime scenes. They hope it will give them answers to this investigation.

Investigators believe the burglaries started in Joaquin and ended in Huxley at the Samson Oil Field right before 5 a.m. The businesses that were burglarized were Worsham Grocery, Toledo Baptist Church, MKO Trucking, Harvey's Landing, Lout Town Grocery, Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, Samson Oil Field Company, The City of Huxley, Air Port Scrap Metal, and a barn off of  FM 2694 where a green Yamaha four-wheeler was stolen.

If you have any information about these cases please call Center Crime Stoppers at 936-598-SAFE or send a web tip at . You could earn a cash reward up to $1,000 if your information leads to the arrest of the suspects.

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