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Two arrested for alleged auto break-ins

Dawson one of five counties involved

POSTED: January 28, 2009 4:00 a.m.

Officials believe the two men arrested for a string of auto break-ins in Lumpkin County are responsible for at least seven reported thefts in the Chestatee Golf Club community.


Dawson County Investigator Ray Goodie brought felony charges against Zachary Paul Ashe, 19, and Tanner Elliott Butler, 20 both of Cleveland, Monday.


The pair is charged with entering several garages and automobiles in the subdivision where thousands of dollars in golf clubs, power tools and other items were stolen.


Both face two counts of burglary and five counts of entering an auto in Dawson County.


Additional charges are expected to be brought against the suspects when the case goes before a grand jury later this year, Goodie said.


Dawson County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Lt. Tony Wooten said a search of the pair’s home in White County uncovered all but one item that had been reported stolen in the area in Dawson County in mid-January.


Butler and Ashe were taken into custody in Lumpkin County last week following reports they were breaking into cars and after a brief foot chase with authorities.


“The reports fit the description of several entering autos that we had here in our county. Ray was made aware of it, interviewed both individuals in Lumpkin County and was able to determine, he believed, they were also responsible for the entering autos here in Dawson,” Wooten said.


The suspects are currently being held without bond in Lumpkin County on seven counts of entering an auto and one count each of obstruction and giving a false name, according to Lumpkin County Sheriff’s spokesman Darren Martin.


They are also suspects in a number of related thefts in Hall, Gwinnett and White counties, according to authorities.


E-mail Michele Hester at



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