Stolen Fair jog bike returned to owner
Sheriff’s deputies are continuing to follow leads after a red jog bike stolen from the horse barns at the Neshoba County Fairgrounds was returned to its owner.
Sheriff Eric Clark said that they have returned the jog bike to 81-year-old Jerome Donald.
Clark said the bike was returned to the Sheriff’s Department. The buggy had been spray-painted to conceal the red color.
Donald said that he got right to work once the jog bike was returned on Friday, Dec. 18. He changed the wheels and gave it a fresh coat of paint.
“It is in good shape now,” Donald said.
He said that it felt good to have his property back.
Clark said the investigation was largely centered in the East Neshoba and Good Hope communities and points to juveniles, though no arrests have been made as of Tuesday morning. Clark said the case remains under investigation.
Donald said last week that he had been taking his horse to the track on the weekends for training and had noticed the piece of equipment taken from one of the horse stalls near the race track on Friday, Dec. 11.
A jog bike is one of two kinds of sulkies used in harness racing. Race bikes are more aerodynamic and compact.
Donald has been racing and training horses for about 45 years. He usually competes in the harness races during the Fair and has taken horses to compete “up north” in Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Illinois.
What he likes best about horse racing is “winning,” he said.
Donald purchased the buggy within the past six months from a friend replacing an old one that was worn out.
Clark said last week that he had spoken to Donald and some of his family during the investigation. He said he estimates the bike is worth about $500 in its used condition.
Donald’s daughters Christy Battle and Vickie Kilpatrick made a widely shared post on social media about the stolen bike.
The jog bike was one of two major items returned a the end of last week. He said his office was finally able to return an expensive handgun to a man who had had one taken from his home on Deemer Road last year.
Clark said they were happy to be able to return the pistol to its owner, Ronald Burton, who works and travels as a rodeo clown and bullfighter.
"Feels good to solve a victim crime," Clark wrote on social media in a post announcing the return of the two items.
Clark said that the pistol, Sig Sauer, was the most expensive of 11 guns recovered in November.
“This was probably worth more than the other guns combined,” Clark said.
That seizure included a Mississippi Bureau of Investigation Rock River Arms rifle stolen from an agent's vehicle parked at First Baptist Church for a Wednesday evening revival on Nov. 18. Other guns recovered included two pistols reported stolen from vehicles at Neshoba General that same evening.
Nicholas Lamar Catchings, 34, and Jeremy Howard Henry, 28, were arrested and charged in the investigation which is ongoing.