A vehicle seized by deputies last year during a traffic stop had been reported stolen. On November 9th, Johnston County deputies responded to a burglary in progress call in the Cleveland community. A short time later, an officer stopped a pickup truck on Highway 42 West matching the description of a vehicle seen leaving the burglary scene.
During a routine background check on the vehicle, officers determined the vehicle identification number (VIN) came back to a 1997 Ford sport utility vehicle however the VIN plate was attached to a 1994 Ford Ranger. Deputies seized the truck. The following day, with the assistance of NC DMV inspectors, they located the correct VIN on the truck and determined it had reported stolen in Wake County.
On March 31st, deputies located and charged 35 year-old John Wayne Smith Jr. of Whittington Road, Angier with possession of a stolen motor vehicle and altering the serial number on a motor vehicle.
Smith was brought before a criminal magistrate and served with the two felony warrants. A magistrate set his bail at $30,000.