FAYETTEVILLE — First they busted the burglary ring. Now Cumberland County authorities say they've found the fence. They believe tens of thousands of dollars worth of stolen goods made their way back into the public from a Fayetteville electronics store.
Investigators say a large amount of stolen merchandise was taken during by a seven person burglary ring headed by Robert Wright. The group then allegedly traded the items for drugs or sold them.
"At other locations, they were either pawned at a pawn shop or taken to other area stores that would actually buy these items for cash, and also Mr. Lee's place of business," explained Lt. James Black.
Investigators say Willie George Jackson owned the electronics store in which hundreds of the stolen items were sold to unsuspecting customers. But the real owners probably won't get their stuff back without serial numbers.
"We're spending a lot of man hours going back in our computers to try and find records of name brands of stereos, etc.," Captain Brad Chandler said. "It's very very hard."
Investigators say the burglars and the fence had a system, and that's why more than a hundred homes were hit.
"These people, they're hunting you down, knocking you off one by one," said Chandler. "And while you're at work, they're stealing your property and going to sleep early and getting up late."
Authorities say the investigation is on-going, and they expect to make more arrests.