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Two men facing charges after alleged chase, attempted fuel theft

Ryan Nichols
Ryan Nichols(Washington County Jail)
Published: Jan. 18, 2022 at 6:47 PM EST
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MARIETTA, Ohio (WTAP) - Two men are facing charges related to an alleged fuel theft and chase that began at a Washington County business early Sunday morning.

Ryan Nichols is in the Washington County Jail on charges of fictitious plates, prohibited parking, theft without consent, possession of criminal tools, obstructing official business, and criminal trespassing. He was given different bonds for each charge, totaling $4,500. No bond is listed next to the prohibited parking charge. Deputies say he had a warrant out from the Marietta Police Department for a traffic offense when he was first taken into custody Sunday morning.

The other man accused in the theft and chase has been identified by authorities as Terry Fox. They asked for a warrant for his arrest Sunday night.

According to an affidavit of facts, both men are believed to have led authorities on a chase that began as a man passing by tried to check out some “suspicious activity” at Briggs Sand & Gravel around 6:52 o’clock Sunday morning.

When the man approached in his truck, authorities say a 1996 Subaru Legacy suddenly fled and nearly hit him.

The passerby then called the sheriff’s department and followed the car out Blue Knob Road. While following the Subaru, the man told authorities he saw what looked like a man and a fuel tank in the backseat of the car. He also said he saw a hose dragging on the ground.

A sergeant in the sheriff’s department met the suspect vehicle and passerby as they were approaching the intersection of Veto Road and Tadpole Road with his lights and sirens on. The sergeant says the Subaru showed no signs of stopping and ended up striking both driver side doors of his cruiser. The deputy turned around and continued his pursuit over a hill, where he spotted the Subaru parked in a field.

Other deputies arrived on scene and found Nichols not long after, hiding under a pile of leaves in a wooded area.

Authorities say when they returned to Briggs Sand & Gravel, they found a tractor-trailer truck with no fuel cap and diesel spilled on the ground.

Deputies also say Nichols reeked of diesel when they found him.

The affidavit of facts says a receipt from Kroger was found inside the Subaru, which led investigators to security footage of Terry Fox, who is familiar to deputies. He was even pulled over in the same Subaru Legacy (which authorities say was sporting fake tags and a bad registration) just a couple of weeks prior.

Deputies hoped in the affidavit of facts to arrest Fox for criminal trespassing, theft, possessing criminal tools, obstructing official business, failure to comply, operation in willful disregard of the safety of persons, fictitious license plates, and stopping after accident on public roads.

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