Authorities believe theft ring fueled by drugs

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GRADY COUNTY, Okla.-- Several agencies are investigating a burglary ring that possibly spans across several Oklahoma counties. Lawmen have already recovered thousands of dollars in property and say it is just the tip of the iceberg.

"They're scared," Grady County Sheriff Art Kell said. "The people out there are afraid of what's going to happen, and they're armed and ready to take action."

Rural residents of Grady County were armed after the area has been the target of burglaries, and authorities were also armed when they rolled up on this house in Chickasha.

"We heard some scuffling in the house, and one of the individuals inside came out," Kell said.

Investigators said the individual was 25-year-old Charles Phillips, Jr., and that he had a gun in his hand until lawmen ordered him to drop it.

"The guy was turning around and almost got shot," Kell said. "The guy was sitting there with a gun and was about to point it at the officer."

Once inside, they found 25-year-old Travis Layne hiding in the attic and around the house meth, a meth pipe, several stolen guns, including a sawed off shotgun as well as two stolen motorcycles that had been spray painted silver.

Investigators from Grady and Caddo Counties and the Department of Agriculture are piece by piece putting together a burglary ring they believe is run to buy drugs.

Both Phillips and Layne are in the Grady County jail facing several charges.

If you have any information about the alleged theft ring, contact authorities.

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