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Bond set at $5,000 for ex-firefighter charged with taking brush truck from former department
HARDIN COUNTY - A judge has arraigned an ex-firefighter from Lumberton and set bond at $5,000 on a charge of taking a brush truck from his former department.
The judge arraigned Justin LeBoeuf, 19, of Lumberton, on a charge of Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle. LeBouef surrendered Wednesday the Hardin County Sheriff's Office. The charge is a State Jail Felony punishable by up to two years behind bars.
Fire Chief Bob Simonson told KFDM News LeBoeuf was a firefighter in Lumberton from February 14, 2012 until November 30, 2013 when he resigned.
"There's some damage where he slid something across the hood and scratched the hood and the front bumper, but it's nothing paint won't fix," Simonson says.
The brush truck was taken Sunday night or early Monday morning from the fire station on Keith Road, according to investigators. It was recovered Thursday morning in Tyler County. Investigators say a winch, chainsaw and other items were taken from the truck.
"Some of the stuff was stolen from it. We've recovered everything that was taken off it, except for a flashlight," Simonson says.
Chief Simonson says LeBoeuf walked up, typed in the code and walked right in.
"He's probably done more than a disservice than just somebody stealing it for the sake of stealing it," Simonson said. "This vehicle not being here could impact a house down the street you know somebody's house."
If law enforcement officers hadn't found the truck, the chief says the hefty price tag would've prevented the department from quickly replacing it. The brush truck costs more than $100,000.
"It's not just a pick up truck. Yes it's a pick up truck in the front, but the back is where we have our vested interest. It's got water, it's got hose," Simonson says.
And now that it's back home, the chief is left to deal with one last thing.
"It's a total slap in the face to the organization and to all the members here," Simonson said.
The chief says his department will install new cameras at the fire stations and change the pass codes for the doors.