Tip leads to stolen fishing reels and arrest of suspect

A tip that a man was coming through Pine Bluff on Monday afternoon carrying a number of fishing reels that were stolen led to the man’s arrest.

Gary Johnson, 55, had 26 reels in a duffel bag that was found in Johnson’s vehicle when police stopped it in the Dollarway area, Detective Jeremy Oswalt said in a probable-cause affidavit that was presented in court Wednesday.

Deputy Prosecutor Maxie Kizer said the value of the fishing reels was listed at $1,983.66.

Oswalt said in the affidavit that the information police received was that the man, later identified as Johnson, was driving a blue Toyota Celica and he and Detective Steven Rucker saw the car at Dollarway Road and School Street and stopped it at Dollarway Road and Humac Street.

The duffel bag containing the reels was partially open and in plain sight, Oswalt said in the affidavit.

When Johnson was interviewed, he allegedly said that he had stolen the reels from businesses in Sherwood, Conway, Morrilton and Russellville.

During the court hearing, Kizer said Johnson had failures to appear “from all over the state.”

Pine Bluff District Judge John Kearney set a $50,000 bond for Johnson after ruling that prosecutors had probable cause to charge him with theft by receiving.

The Public Defender’s Office was appointed to represent Johnson.