Man charged in rifle theft

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Suspect attempted to extort money from victim with stolen gun

A Cassville man has been charged with two felonies after allegedly stealing a rifle from a home on Farm Road 2190, then attempting to use the stolen gun to extort money from the victim of the burglary.

Robert Aaron Windes, aka Aaron Carr, 26, of Cassville, is charged with second-degree burglary and stealing a firearm.

According to a probable cause statement filed by Det. Robert Evenson, with the Barry County Sheriff’s Office, on April 5 between 6:40 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Windes allegedly entered the home and took a DPMS, G11 Recon AR10, .308-caliber semi-automatic rifle, valued at about $2,500.

The next day, at about 11:41 a.m., Windes took the rifle to a pawn shop in Republic and asked about fitting a suppressor to it.

On April 11, Windes contacted the victim and said he’d heard about the rifle being stolen, thought he might have seen it and thought he might be able to get it back, but the victim would have to pay some money for it. The victim agreed to give $100 to get the rifle back.

Windes and the victim spoke by telephone and facetime several times through the night of April 11, and the victim was able to notice a dog food bag in Windes’ truck during a facetime conversation. Windes told the victim he was able to retrieve the upper part of the rifle, and he delivered it to the victim’s roommate. However, Windes said to get the other half of the gun, the victim would have to pay $200 more, a deal the victim agreed to.

Windes then told the victim that the people who had the rifle did not give it to him, but left it in a ditch on a farm road outside of Exeter. The victim’s roommate retrieved the rifle, which was in the same dog food bag the victim saw in Windes’ truck.

On April 14, Windes, the victim and the roommate met and had a conversation about the incident with the rifle, a conversation that was recorded and provided to deputies. In the conversation, Windes said the rifle was given to him by another man who owed him a drug debt. Windes said he gave the gun back to that man before learning it belonged to the victim. Windes later allegedly admitted in the conversation he had the rifle for two or three days and had made up the part about needing more and more money to get it back, also admitting he was trying to get money for himself from the victim.

Evenson said Windes provided deputies with information regarding other people involved in the incident, but none of that information has been corroborated. Windes also promised to provide phone records, but later refused to do so, and Evenson said Windes has changed his appearance since first talking to deputies by cutting his hair and shaving his beard.

Evenson said after speaking with Windes the first time, when he left the room, Windes immediately called the victim and was upset about him telling law enforcement about the incident, and he was panicked about being in trouble and possibly having to provide phone records.

Windes had a warrant with a bond of $30,000, but the warrant order was withdrawn. He has been arraigned, and a disposition hearing is scheduled for May 25 at 8:30 a.m. in the courtroom of Judge Robert Foulke.

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