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Zachery T. Cook, Crystal Marie Arnold.
Photo provided courtesy of Beech Mountain Police Department.

Originally published: 2013-01-04 14:41:53
Last modified: 2013-01-04 14:50:27

Local couple arrested on 22 charges

Not everyone chooses a New Year’s resolution wisely. One Tennessee couple allegedly elected to kick 2013 off with a poorly planned crime spree, beginning with a theft on Beech Mountain and ending with their arrests in Invershiel, according to Beech Mountain Police Chief Jay Hefner.
According to a statement that Hefner released this week, in the evening on New Year’s Day, Beech Mountain Police Department received a report of the breaking and entering of a motor vehicle at Ski Beech Resort. The items missing from the vehicle totaled more than $4,000 in value. Officers brought the victims to Beech Mountain Police Department, where they used the telephone to close down their credit and debit card accounts.
While calling Bank of America to cancel a card, the victim learned that the card had been used at Banner Elk Exxon only minutes before.
The Beech Mountain telecommunicator immediately contacted Banner Elk Exxon, and was able to get a description of the individuals that had used the card from the employee at the gas station.
This description went out to other agencies. Officers from Banner Elk Police Department, Sugar Mountain Police Department and Seven Devils Public Safety responded. They quickly located the suspects at Rite Aid Pharmacy in Invershiel, where they had just used the stolen cards to make additional purchases.
Officers soon discovered that the suspects in the case, Crystal Marie Arnold, 26, and Zachery T. Cook, 27, of Roan Mountain, Tenn., had warrants for their arrest in both Avery County and Carter County, Tenn.
In addition to all the stolen property, including the credit cards, the suspects’ vehicle also contained methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.
Once all agencies involved had assessed the situation and its impact on their jurisdictions, the two suspects were charged with around 22 criminal charges, most of which were felonies.
Hefner extended his thanks to the other departments that contributed to the quick resolution of the case, and to Avery County Communications for its integral role in relaying the information that led to the arrests.
“The cooperation between agencies was excellent and everyone can be proud of a job well done,“ Hefner said.