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Report of mail theft in Jefferson County leads to drug arrests

From The Trussville Tribune staff reports

JEFFERSON COUNTY — Two men were arrested Wednesday after reports of mail theft in the Sylvan Springs area.

Just after 8 a.m. Wednesday, deputies responded to a report that two men had been seen taking mail from mailboxes in the area of Hoagtown Loop and Lynn Drive in Sylvan Springs. The men were said to be in a black four-door Ford vehicle.

While searching for the suspect vehicle, deputies said they located a blue Ford pickup that had been identified as a suspect vehicle in a mail theft that occurred on Dec. 12, parked at a nearby business. Deputies said they checked the video surveillance from the business and saw a black Ford Focus stop and pick up the driver of the truck.

The Focus soon returned to the business parking lot. The passenger got out of the car and go back into the truck.

Both vehicles were stopped by deputies. Officers identified the driver of the truck as 33-year-old Eric Chase Watson of Mulga. He was found to be in possession of drug paraphernalia, a sheriff’s office statement said. He also had an outstanding warrant and a revoked driver’s license. Additionally, 32-year-old Phillip Ryan Graham of Mulga, identified as the driver of the car, was also found to have a revoked driver’s license and was found to be in possession of drug paraphernalia, deputies said.

Watson was arrested for unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and the outstanding warrant. Graham was arrested for unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. Both men were taken to the Jefferson County Jail in Bessemer.

During the inventory of the vehicles, several pieces of mail were found from different addresses in the area. None belonged to the suspects.

The investigation is ongoing and additional charges are expected.

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