West Columbia man and his girlfriend charged in 3-month crime spree

September 20, 2013 

— A Lexington County man and his live-in girlfriend were arrested Friday and charged in a three-month-long, summertime crime spree that targeted private homes and a business and netted more than $25K in stolen property.

Gene Carroll “Fuzzy’ Rutland Jr., 31, of Minolta Drive, West Columbia was charged with six counts of grand larceny, Lexington County Sheriff James Metts said in a news release. Rachel Ann Hobson, 35, was charged with accessory after the fact of a felony and obstruction of justice. The crime spree lasted from May 21 to Sept. 5, authorities said.

The arrest warrant alleges Rutland launched his crime spree at the Ballbusters Paintball facility on Super Drive in West Columbia when he stole a Yamaha Big Bear all-terrain vehicle, an EZ Go golf cart and a Stihl chainsaw.

After a two-month hiatus, Rutland is alleged to have hit homes in Gaston and Swansea in rapid succession, taking a video camera, computer cord, large saw blade, farm equipment, scrap metal, a 2013 CF Moto X500 all-terrain vehicle, and a 17-foot bass boat with a 150-horse power outboard motor in five separate events between Aug. 2 and Sept. 5.

Hobson was pulled into the criminal enterprise, Metts said, when she tried to buy replacement parts for one of the all-terrain vehicles on Sept. 12.

Friday night, both Hobson and Rutland were being held at the Lexington County Detention Center, Hobson on a $10,000 bond and Rutland, awaiting a bond hearing.

Rachael Myers Lowe

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