Two charged with livestock theft in Mississippi County, MO

Two East Prairie, MO, residents face felony livestock theft and burglary charges after an investigation this week, the Mississippi County Sheriff’s Department said Friday.

Wednesday night a resident of the Missouri county reported a dozen longhorn steer, sheep and goats stolen from his business to Mississippi County Chief Deputy Charlie Marcum.

Marcum and Deputy Cory Hutcheson then told regional livestock markets about the thefts and learned Ronnie Dale Moreland, 53, and Leslie Elaine Moreland, 34, sold some livestock in central Illinois the day of the theft. The sheriff’s department said deputies also learned during the investigation that Ronnie Moreland borrowed a livestock trailer the day of the thefts.

Mississippi County Sheriff Keith Moore, Chief Deputy Marcum and deputies David Watkins and Marc Tragesser found the Morelands and, the department says, property connecting them to the burglary was found in their possession.

The Morelands were arrested and taken to the Mississippi County Detention Center. They’ve been charged with second degree burglary and twelve counts of stealing livestock. They also face misdemeanor charges of stealing property valued at less than $500 and first degree trespassing. 

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