Officials ID 2 Bay Area men as gold heist suspects

posted in: news | 0

Saturday, March 30, 2013

YREKA, Calif. (AP) — Two San Francisco Bay area men have been named as suspects in connection with the theft of more than $1 million in gold from a county courthouse’s historical collection, Siskiyou County officials said.

David Dean Johnson, 49, of El Cerrito and Scott Wayne Bailey, 51, of El Sobrante, are wanted on $1 million arrest warrants issued earlier this week, The Redding Record-Searchlight reported Friday.

The two allegedly broke into the gold collection at the Siskiyou County Courthouse in Yreka in February 2012 and made off with $1,257,500 in gold, jewelry and artifacts.

“These thieves stole a part of Siskiyou County history, which represents the hard work, sacrifice, traditions, and pioneer spirit which characterizes the personality of Siskiyou County and its citizens – past and present,” Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey said in a statement.

After allegedly making off with the gold, jewelry and artifacts, Johnson and Bailey used the money from the sale of the goods to purchase “high-value” items, Lopey said.

The entire gold collection before the theft was valued at about $3 million. Lopey said it would be “highly speculative” to guess how much of the gold, if any, would eventually be recovered, Lopey said… >>MORE (