Josey Wilson
Josey Wilson
July 11, 2013

Two teens accused of stealing vehicles as they tried to escape arrest this week in three counties allegedly admitted in interviews with law officers to a series of burglaries and thefts in the area, according to Greene County Sheriff Steve Haupert.

"We will probably be able to solve at least three or four more burglaries and thefts in our county," Haupert said.

Zach Wailes, 19, of Breda, and Josey Wilson, 19, of Carroll, were arrested Tuesday night after sheriffs' deputies attempted to apprehend the teens four times in less than 24 hours, initially for the theft of a truck and camper in which they might have lived for more than a week in a Calhoun County timber.

The teens allegedly escaped a high-speed chase in the stolen truck with three Carroll County deputies Monday night and less than an hour later fled from the Calhoun County sheriff and two of his deputies from the campsite northwest of Lake City.

Wailes and Wilson are suspected of stealing an all-terrain vehicle and car to escape the area. The car was later found at Spring Lake State Park in Greene County, but again the teens eluded capture.

They were finally arrested Tuesday night in Grand Junction based on a resident's tip, Haupert has said.

Wailes is charged with three felonies in Carroll County - one for theft and two for burglary - and is held in the county's jail. The theft charge is punishable by up to 10 years in prison if he is convicted.

Wilson is held in the Greene County Jail on a felony charge for possession of stolen property for the car deputies found at Spring Lake. That is punishable by up to five years in prison if he is convicted.

More criminal charges against the men are expected in all three counties.

Three Glidden women reported last month that purses and wallets were stolen from vehicles in that town, according to Carroll County Sheriff's reports. It's unclear whether Wailes and Wilson were the thieves in those incidents.

Unrelated arrest warrants for Wailes and Wilson were outstanding in Carroll and Shelby counties before the string of thefts for failing to appear in court for drug and trespassing charges, respectively, according to court records.

Wailes has been convicted twice of possession of a controlled substance this year in Carroll County - including in June - and has another similar charge pending.

Wilson was convicted of trespassing last year and has failed to pay more than $11,000 in restitution, court records show.