MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Deputies posted signs. They even slapped stickers on the darn things.
Apparently, Eric Heard didn't get the memo -- or watch WMC Action News 5 last November.
Because Monday, Shelby County deputies released an affidavit indicating they caught the 45-year-old theft suspect with the same tracking device showcased in this dramatic WMC Action News 5 demonstration.
According to the affidavit, Shelby County ALERT (Area Law Enforcement & Retail Team) detectives, investigators from the General Investigations Bureau and sheriff's patrol officers arrested Heard, of Frayser, on charges of aggravated burglary and theft of property. Authorities are holding him on a $200,000 bond.
According to the affidavit, ALERT had suspected Heard of stealing stoves and refrigerators from homes in the Woodland Hills neighborhood of Cordova, Tennessee, for the last eight months. So deputies put a GPS tracking device inside a stove at another Woodland Hills home.
It was just a matter of time before detectives' smart phones alerted them that the stove was on the move.
Just like how we tracked the "stolen" air conditioning unit in our demonstration, Shelby County investigators tracked Heard and that stove from Woodland Hills, Cordova, to Dean's Appliances, 2947 Overton Crossing in Frayser. According to the affidavit, investigators found four more appliances they claimed Heard stole from Cordova homes and sold to Ernest McCoy, owner of Dean's Appliances.
McCoy, who could not be reached for comment, has not been charged in connection with the investigation. Heard's arrest affidavit indicated McCoy cooperated with the investigation.