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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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12/7/2012 1:17:00 PM
Three state crime spree ends in Jerome
Dakota Bryan Hall
Dakota Bryan Hall
Zachery Lewis Schutts
Zachery Lewis Schutts

Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter


JEROME-- Jerome Police arrested two men from Oklahoma Tuesday, ending a three-state crime spree after an all-night manhunt.

Chief Allen Muma and local deputies got a lot of help from surrounding law enforcement, a DPS helicopter, firefighters and even local citizens.

Police arrested two men, charging them with burglary and attempted auto theft. Zachery Lewis Schutts, age 20, and Dakota Bryan Hall, 18, out of Locust Grove, Okla., also face similar charges in Oklahoma and Colorado.

Jerome Police were called about 12:30 in the morning Tuesday, on a burglary report at the Jerome Jewelry Market on Jerome Avenue. A local witness followed the suspects to a van parked on Main Street. When they realized they were spotted, they fled the area.

A computer check showed the van was stolen from Montrose, Colo., several days earlier.

Jerome Police requested help from Clarkdale and Cottonwood PDs, the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office, Jerome Fire Department, the Arizona DPS helicopter and canines from the Prescott Valley PD.

A perimeter was established and with the search helicopter buzzing overhead all night, an extensive search involved officers searching for the outlaws in yards and houses with the police dogs. The wanted suspects allegedly attempted to steal two different vehicles in their efforts to escape but were unsuccessful when spotted by watchful residents.

At about 9 a.m., after more than eight hours of searching by police, the suspects attempted to break out of the perimeter, and a citizen reported them on Hampshire Avenue.

Bill Volk, assistant chief of the Jerome Fire Department, said two men with backpacks did not look like the Jerome students that were being picked up by the bus. When a local woman pointed them out, the suspects fled over the hill behind the Jerome High School and were stopped on foot on the highway below Dundee Road below the school

Police converged on the suspects, and the two were arrested without further incident. Officers recovered property they had allegedly stolen from the jewelry store.

In addition to the vehicle stolen from Colorado, police discovered a large quantity of what is believed to be stolen property in the van.

The investigation showed the suspects fled Oklahoma after stealing a vehicle, guns and money in the Town of Locust Grove, were involved in a police chase in Colorado, where they ditched that stolen vehicle, and hitchhiked to Montrose. At Montrose, they stole another vehicle after burglarizing more businesses, according to the report, and picked up some hitchhikers in Boulder City, Nev. They were reportedly stopped from rolling out a shopping cart but got away with electronics at the Cottonwood Wal-Mart. Then they went to Jerome.

Muma credits the cooperation among law enforcement units, citizens and the Jerome Fire Department with the successful outcome of this case. "It was incredible, I thank them all," he said.

Taylor Waste

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Reader Comments

Posted: Sunday, December 16, 2012
Article comment by: Crystal Hall

My son is still in jail, I did not bail him out while I was there on 12/11/2012, he is being held accountable for his crimes, and I am not making excuses for him.

Someone doesn't go from being good to this without a reason, DRUGS were and are the reason, and he turned to the drugs after the death of his father.

My son came to me a few months ago wanting help to get off the K-2 (you call it Spice) I made several calls with no luck, my son was crying out for help and we couldn't get anyone to answer.

This drug is so bad that my son's best friend (only 16 years old) just committed suicide, he was on the same drug synthetic and sold in stores legally.

Until you have walked a mile in someone's shoes you do not have the right to judge, and even then you must look at all the surroundings.

Thank you,
Sorry in Oklahoma


Posted: Sunday, December 16, 2012
Article comment by: Crystal Hall

I am posting this to Lissa Martin and any others who are interested.

Lissa, I am not making excuses for my son, he did what he did and deserves to be punished for his crimes I am not an enabler.

I went to Arizona for my son's court on 12/11/2012, I spoke with the attorney to see what the plea bargain was that he was offered, and I told the attorney to tell him to take the plea. The attorney informed me he didn't want him to take the plea because he has no priors and could get a better deal, I in turn made it very clear that I did not want my son getting a slap on wrist, that is the reason for so many repeat offenders.

My son is a GOOD person who made some bad choices, and YES, drugs were the main reason for his choices he turned to drugs after the death of his father, three weeks before his 17th birthday. My son, when he realized he wouldn't finish high school, enrolled in a military youth camp to get his GED, he made that decision on his own.

Dakota came to me a few months back, he was crying, and wanted help to get off the K-2, in Arizona you call it spice, I tried to get help but was unsuccessful as we live in a small town and they do not offer rehab and the larger towns only have a one hour to one day evaluation center there was NO help so he just got deeper into the drugs.

Just to let you know how bad this drug is, my son's best friend (16 years old) just committed suicide on 12/07/2012 from the depression caused by this synthetic drug. So don't tell me that I am making excuses for my son's indiscretions.

I am a good loving mother who doesn't want to see my son put in prison 1100 miles away for a crime he committed while on drugs because there was no one willing to help him he cried out for help and was denied.

As a parent, if you are a good parent, you only want the best for your children, and when they are hurting, you hurt.

One more thing, just because someone is 18, doesn't make him or her an adult. Even the states and Government can't make up their minds. At 16 you are of legal age to say you want to have sex, and 18 you can buy cigarettes and move out on your own, and at 21 you are legal to buy beer and other alcohol financial aid for college is determined by your parents income until you are 25 years old you tell me what age is considered an adult.

Also one's mental state of mind is used to determine if they are stable enough to be held accountable for crimes committed you are trying to be judge and jury without even seeing the facts or reasons.

Once again, I do not want my son to get a slap on the wrist, he needs to be punished in some form, rather it be rehab, jail, or a combinations of the both, he doesn't need a walk.

Sorry in Oklahoma,
Crystal Hall



Posted: Friday, December 14, 2012
Article comment by: David Alan

Well said, Lisa.

Posted: Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Article comment by: Lissa Martin

I would like to say that crystal you should not be apologizing for anything you should be allowing your son to accountable for what he did. He is 18 and a adult he made a decision and from what I read know one twisted his arm or forced him to do it. You are allowing him to use what has happened to him as a excuse and not being held accountable. The young men both made the decision not just one and to blame one for this and allowing your son to use a death as a excuse is not teaching him responsibility it is teaching him that if something in my life is bad I can do what I want and it is ok because I had a bad life.. Wrong I know people that have bad lives and did not do anything like this. Life is fully of choices no matter if we are give a good time or a bad time but we are still required to make a decision not a excuse. I did not like how you want to blame one for what your son did when you should be strong and teach him that choices have concequences and he should be a man and own up to them no matter what his punishment is he did the crime the same as the other he needs the punishment, I am sure if you asked the other boy was a good boy as well. If parents would quit making excuses and giving excuses for their children maybe they would make better decisions before they take actions.

Posted: Saturday, December 8, 2012
Article comment by: Brian Carlson

You boys picked the wrong town to mess with. Thank you law enforcement for getting these guys off the street.

Posted: Friday, December 7, 2012
Article comment by: Paul Hobbs

Dear Ms. Hall:

Thank you for writing. Please know that you are not responsible for what your son has done.

We appreciate you mentioning he is good, and I am sure you tried your best to raise him right. As parents, that's all any of us can do.

As our children become adults, we as parents must let them go and live their own lives. You are not responsible for what he has done.

Our hearts and prayers go out to you and your family. We hope your son recovers from this fully and completely and one day makes you proud.


Posted: Friday, December 7, 2012
Article comment by: Bless you Crystal

Sometimes we never know what gets into our children's heads, that makes them do what they do, go against what they've been taught. My sympathies to you, this must be very hard to go through! Hopefully your son will learn from this and get back in the right direction, both boys and yourself will be in my prayers.

Posted: Friday, December 7, 2012
Article comment by: Sarah Moser

The correct name of the business that was burglarized in Jerome is Jerome's Jewelry and Gifts, owned by Rick and Karen Hernandez, not Jerome Jewelry Market.

Posted: Friday, December 7, 2012
Article comment by: Don't Mess with Jerome

Proving once again ... don't mess with the Jerome!

The locals'll getchya.

But if the locals like you ... well in that town, a person could virtually disappear.


Posted: Friday, December 7, 2012
Article comment by: Crystal Hall

I want to say I am very sorry for what my son has caused, I do not know what got into him unless he was on drugs he really is a good boy who just lost his dad a little over a year ago, and got with the wrong person.

If I could take back what he has done, I would do it in a heartbeat I would take his place if I could.

Once again, I am very sorry for the crimes he committed and the trouble he put everyone in.




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