SHAWNEE, Okla. - The owner of a stolen tractor miraculously spotted it on the road twice, and was able to lead police to those who had it.
Nathan Trexler and his wife own Sarah's Pool & Landscape, and have all the tools they need to build custom tools. That includes a small tractor/loader called a skid-steer. On Monday, Trexler discovered the Skid Steer had been stolen. A $20,000 loss.
"Thought I`d never see it again," Trexler said. "You can`t really build a swimming pool without it, so it`s a big deal."
So the next day, he couldn't believe his eyes, or his luck, when he saw it being pulled by a stranger's truck on I-35 near SE 59th. He was with his cousin and the got off the interstate to turn around, but by the time they got back on, the tractor was gone.
"They`re going 70," Trexler said. "They just got away, we couldn`t see them."
But he didn't give up hope, and a search began. The two drove all the way up I-235, east on I-44, back south on I-35, then made the decision to travel east on I-40 all the way out to Lake Eufala. Finally they turned back. It was a three hour trip, 170 miles altogether, and they knew the tractor could be anywhere by now.
"I kept saying, please let me see it again, please God let me see it again," Trexler said.
But as they were passing through Shawnee, Trexler spotted the tractor again, this time on I-40 near Firelake Grand Casino.
"We couldn`t let it go the second time," Trexler said. "There`s no way we could see it twice and not catch it."
They didn't get away this time. Trexler called the police and once they caught up, he started recording the whole thing on Facebook live.
"No one will believe this if I tell them," Drexler said. "They won`t believe it."
The alleged thieves didn't give up, running from police and leading on a chase that went several more miles around Shawnee until they stopped at a gas station and surrendered.
"Trexler said there were three people in the truck, but so far police have only confirmed the driver, Ronald Hulvey, was arrested. Charges against him include possession of stolen property, eluding police, and possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
Trexler just grateful they never gave up.
"I just wanted them to know it was us that found them, not the police," Trexler said. "It was us."