Oilfield Thefts Continue To Be A Problem In Winkler County 1/21/14
CBS 7 News
January 21, 2014
WINKLER COUNTY-Oilfield robberies continue to be a growing problem in Winkler County.
According to the Winkler County Sheriff’s Office, more oilfield companies are now hiring former law enforcement officers to work as security guards.
Sheriff George Keely says often time oilfields are left unattended throughout the day making it easier for thieves to come in and steal.
In just the past year Keely says oilfield theft has been dealt with in a joint effort.
"Now these oilfield companies have caught on in hiring retired peace officers to help secure their land," Keely said.
Keely says the communication between law enforcement and these security guards is crucial.
"It’s actually helping what we do. When I get that information, it's intelligence, is what we call it, we pass it on, we disseminate it to every one of our deputies, and then the deputies are out there in those fields that these security people have told us about, looking for those people [thieves] in those vehicles," Keely said.
Thanks to the help of a former Texas Ranger, Keely says they were able to arrest two oilfield thieves and return the stolen property.
Sheriff Keely says there's always going to be oilfield theft going on, but having more security and officers on watch in the area will help reduce the problem.