The Very Long Arm of the Law

NEWPORT CITY - Robert Morse, 38, of Hutchinson, KS, pleaded guilty Dec. 1 to possessing a trailer stolen from NEVTEC on the Airport Road. Because Morse is out of state, he entered his plea by waiver and did not appear in court. He was sentenced to pay a $300 fine and $186 in surcharges.July 6, 2010, Leonard Griffes, owner of NEVTEC, told police that someone had taken his trailer the day before. Griffes said he had waited to report the trailer missing because he wanted to make sure nobody else in his company had it.On July 16, a NEVTEC employee told Newport City Police Officer Royce Lancaster that he had found the trailer in Derby. The trailer was at Wright's on consignment. Robert Bly of Wright's said he had received the trailer from Gary Champney. Champney, in turn, said he'd bought the trailer from an acquaintance of a hired hand of his. The hired hand turned out to be Morse. The signature on the bill of sale was not readable and there was no price but Champney said he paid $200 for the trailer, which was worth $1200.Morse told Lancaster that he bought the trailer from Joseph Brown on July 5 who lived "somewhere over the mountain" near Richford. Police were unable to locate such a person.Before police could cite Morse into court, Morse moved to Kansas. Because of a custody dispute, Morse apparently returned to Newport and was located by the local police at his old residence on Prospect Street.