Woman charged in string of burglaries, thefts
A Phil Campbell woman was arrested on Monday after authorities said they connected her to multiple burglaries and thefts in Franklin County and the surrounding counties.
Judith Cagle Sutherland, 49, 325 Franklin 166, Phil Campbell, was charged with first-degree theft of property by the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff Shannon Oliver said further charges could be pending.
According to Oliver, the sheriff’s office was notified in early April that she had several pieces of jewelry missing from an estate sale.
Oliver said the victim stated she had received a phone call from a person later identified as Sutherland who had called the victim to set up a time to view the estate items for sale.
Oliver said Sutherland and her husband showed up to the residence and bought $12 worth of items before leaving.
“After they had left, the victim said she noticed some jewelry missing and she determined there was $7,000 worth of jewelry that wasn’t there,” Oliver said.
“At that time, Sutherland was developed as a suspect and the investigation was opened.”
Oliver said during the course of the investigation, investigators learned that Sutherland was also wanted by the Alabama Bureau of Investigation for multiple thefts, burglaries, and an arson that have taken place in Marion and Winston counties since September.
Oliver said warrants were issued for Sutherland, who had allegedly been in hiding, but Oliver said the department received a tip that she was located at a residence in Marion County on Monday.
“Investigators were able to locate Sutherland at the Marion County residence and during the process of her arrest, investigators noticed several pieces of jewelry that matched items that have been reported stolen,” Oliver said.
He said investigators then obtained search warrants for the residence where he said they found multiple stolen items from several counties.
Oliver said victims in the burglaries and thefts were notified and have been in the process of identifying their property.
“A lot of times it is rare to be able to recover stolen property that hasn’t already been sold or gotten rid of so we are glad the victims in the cases are getting back what belongs to them,” Oliver said.
“It’s just sad that someone would steal and take advantage of the hardworking people in this area, so we are glad this person has been taken into custody. I appreciate ABI Inv. Rodney Knight for his help in this case.”
At press time, Sutherland was still in custody at the Franklin County Jail without bond.