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Stafford County Sheriff's Office

Public Safety Center
Ford T. Humphrey Building

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 189
Stafford, VA 22555

Physical Address:
1225 Courthouse Rd.
Stafford, VA 22554


Stafford Alert

Special Event Informational Package & Application

Car Thieves Corralled
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By Major Christopher Kimmitz
February 8, 2022

Two men gambling at the machines in Mr. B’s convenience store yesterday morning made the wrong bet when they thought they could steal a car and escape justice.

On February 7th at 5:45 a.m. Deputy Z.C. Smith responded to Mr. B’s at 375 Warrenton Road for the theft of a motor vehicle. The victim reported she left her unlocked car running in the parking lot while she went into the business to get a cup of coffee. Two opportunistic thieves used this to their advantage and stole the car while she was in the store. The victim witnessed the theft and hurried out of the store, only to receive the middle finger from the driver as he fled in her car onto Warrenton Road.

The vehicle was entered as stolen in law enforcement databases. Other deputies responding to the area, and hearing the suspect descriptions, recognized the dishonest duo as Gary Wood, Jr, 32, and Jerry Howell, Jr., 54. The purloining pair had been in a disturbance at the Red Roof Inn across the street prior to the theft, and were trespassed from the motel.

The stolen car was soon located in Spotsylvania and deputies there attempted a traffic stop on I-95. The suspects fled into the construction zone near mile marker 130 and crashed the stolen car. The passenger, Wood, recognized the futility of running and was immediately taken into custody. Howell opted for a few more minutes of freedom and fled on foot.

Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office Drone Team responded to assist as Fredericksburg Police Department established a Command Post as the incident now involved all three jurisdictions. Howell was taken into custody just after noon by Fredericksburg Police in the Wegman’s grocery store.

Wood was charged with conspiracy and held at the Rappahannock Regional Jail without bond. Howell was charged with grand larceny, conspiracy and driving revoked. He was also held at the Rappahannock Regional Jail without bond.

The Stafford County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank our partners at Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office and Fredericksburg Police Department for their assistance in this case.

We know it is cold out, but please do not leave your unlocked, running car unattended.

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