GRAFTON, W.Va. (WBOY) — A man is in custody after allegedly stealing a fire truck and breaking through the garage of the Grafton Fire Department and parking it in the middle of the road near the courthouse.
On Sept. 5, officers with the Grafton Police Department responded to a call from the Taylor County Sheriff’s Department in relation to a stolen fire truck being parked at the Main Street entrance of the Taylor County Courthouse, according to a criminal complaint.
When officers arrived on scene, they saw the fire truck (truck 109) “parked angled in the middle of the road facing the courthouse entrance,” and learned from a witness that Jason Lyons, 38, of Grafton, used the truck to “make a circle around the building and busted through the gate,” according to a criminal complaint.
The witness told officers that he followed Lyons in his truck toward the courthouse and officers later made contact with Lyons at the 76 gas station, at which point they placed Lyons in custody, officers said.
After placing Lyons under arrest, officers “walked around the building to observe any other damage that may have occurred,” and saw that there was damage to the fire bay door which consisted of “multiple scratch marks on the door,” and ” the frame of the bay door” … “broken off of the building,” and was completely off the door tracks and “dented inwards,” according to the criminal complaint.
Outside of the door, officers said they saw tire marks from “where [Lyons] used truck 109 to break through the door to make entry,” and officers also said they found “[t]he hand railing” and “lights from the top of the truck” … “laying in the area of debris from the broken garage door.”
Lyons then attempted to start truck 1, which was the ladder truck inside the garage, but he was unable to do so and then returned to truck 109; during a search of truck 1, officers saw that “wires were pulled out of the dash,” according to the complaint.
During that time, firefighters in the garage attempted to start truck 1, but were unable to do so, and officers said they then saw three open storage containers in the rear of the building which the firefighters said had been closed prior to the incident; officers then observed that the fire department’s circuit breaker had been opened, as well.
When speaking to the Taylor County Fire Department’s fire chief, officers learned that the estimate for the damage to truck 109 was $20,000, the insurance on truck 1 is “up to $75,000” and an estimate for damage to the building was approximately $15,000.
Lyons has been charged with breaking and entering, grand larceny and two counts of injury or destruction of property. He is being held in Tygart Valley Regional Jail on $20,000 bond.