WICHITA COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — Neighbors of a burglary victim help take a bite out of crime by reporting McGruff the Crime Dog items stolen from owner Artie Woods, leading to the arrest of a convicted burglar just days later.
Dalton Fields, 29, was booked into jail Monday, May 2 with a $20,000 bond, his sixth jail bond this year according to records.
The arrest came after police were contacted by a resident not far from the burglarized home who says Fields sold them two bags of items that included McGruff the Crime Dog items.
They say Fields came to their house uninvited on April 26 with two bags containing boxes of ammunition, knives, gun tools, a Samsung tablet, and other miscellaneous items, including the McGruff items. They say he told them he needed money and sold the items for $15.
The purchasers looked through the items and say they found items that identified the owner, and they called police.
Police contacted Woods who confirmed he was the owner and that the house he owned had been broken into twice the same day.
Neighbors provided surveillance video from the area of the crime, and say it shows Fields and an unknown white male companion walking toward the victim’s house from an alley at around 5 p.m. on April 26. They say another video shows Fields carrying the bags and putting them on the porch of the buyer that night.
Woods praised police for their quick work in returning the property and making an arrest. He and his puppet partner McGruff have been spreading their crime-fighting tips and messages for almost four decades.
Fields and another man are suspected of several other burglaries and attempted burglaries in recent months.
Fields was released from jail on March 22 after posting bonds on two charges of burglary, then was arrested on March 25 on a new charge of attempted burglary.
His first arrest this year was in February when police say two burglars were being watched on a surveillance camera as they broke into a storage container at a motel construction site at Kell and McNiel. The construction company employee kept police updated on the men’s location, and a police officer was waiting for them as they came out of a drainage canal.
He is also charged with a burglary in Iowa Park on Feb. 9 in which two men were recorded on surveillance carrying a TV and soundbar from a house. That same day surveillance video of a building burglary in Iowa Park was posted on Facebook and led to multiple tips that the suspect was Fields, which police say they confirmed.
Fields’ first arrest was in 2009 when he and another 17-year-old were charged with breaking into the Burkburnett High School field house and ROTC building and a convenience store on one weekend.
He has 10 arrests with a total of 18 counts of burglary or theft, 9 counts of violation of probation and served one term in a state jail. He now has five new cases pending in the courts.