By Liz Shepherd
PIERCETON — Two local men face criminal charges after allegedly stealing a tractor and burglarizing Loose Moose Motor Sports in Pierceton.
Jeremy Louis Coburn, 40, 916 S. Hansing St., Syracuse, is charged with burglary, a level 5 felony; and theft, a level 6 felony. Tristen Lee Terry, 34, 9688 E. Excalibur Place, Cromwell, is charged with burglary, a level 5 felony; and two counts of theft, both level 6 felonies.
On Nov. 6, 2019, a Kosciusko County Sheriff’s officer took a call regarding a possible stolen Kubota tractor, valued at approximately $1,400. A security camera at the property recorded footage of a pickup truck backing into a lot on the morning of the theft. That same day, a Kosciusko County detective received a call about a Facebook post regarding a stolen Kubota tractor. The caller told the officer he was contacted through social media by Terry about trading a tractor for a vehicle.
According to court documents, the caller provided the detective with a picture of the tractor being offered by Terry. The detective positively identified it as the stolen tractor.
On Nov. 8, 2019, a Kosciusko County Sheriff’s officer went to Loose Moose Motor Sports regarding a theft report. Upon arrival, the officer was shown video from the surveillance camera outside of the business. Video footage showed a vehicle ramming into a steel gate in the middle of the night to gain access to the property. The vehicle’s occupants then attempted to tow a UTV off of the property, but the tow strap broke; the occupants then left the scene in their vehicle.
A short time later, a different vehicle entered the property. The vehicle drove out of view of the camera but then reappeared pulling a trailer and left the property. Loose Moose Motorsports staff reported that the UTV and a trailer containing a 2015 snowmobile were stolen. The approximate value of the snowmobile is $5,000 and the approximate value of the UTV is $18,895.
After processing the scene, officers left the business and traveled east to look for evidence. They were flagged down by a resident who had discovered tire tracks in their yard, as well as broken vehicle parts. One officer also posted a surveillance photo of one of the vehicles on social media, and several calls were received stating that the vehicle looked like one that belonged to Coburn.
A Syracuse police officer then contacted KCSO to advise he might have found the stolen UTV at Village Lube. Kosciusko County officers went to Village Lube and spoke with a man who gave them contact information for Coburn. The man told officers Terry had been staying with him for a week or so and that Terry used to drive an old Ford but traded it to Coburn for a four-wheeler. The officer then showed a photo of a stolen tractor from another theft investigation to the man, who said the tractor was in Coburn’s shop.
The officer then went to the shop and received consent to search the property. The officer discovered tracks in the yard made by a snowmobile. A truck matching the vehicle on the security camera in the tractor theft was also present on the property.
On Nov. 20, 2019, officers interviewed Terry. He admitted to stealing a UTV and a trailer containing a snowmobile. Terry also admitted to taking the Kubota tractor. That same day, Terry made a phone call from the jail to a woman, saying he had taken the blame for the thefts and that Coburn “did not have to worry about it.” Later that day, Terry also called Coburn and said he took the blame for everything.
On Jan. 10, a search warrant for Coburn’s cell phone revealed his phone was in the area of Loose Moose Motor Sports at the time of the burglary on Nov. 8, 2019.