Two men arrested in early morning ATM theft attempt

UPDATE: Winston Barnes was arrested at 4:55 p.m. on Wednesday the 13th.

He was arrested at a residency at 506 Ferguson Street in Lindale.



The Smith County Sheriff's Office has released the names of both suspects in today's attempted ATM theft.

The first suspect, who was taken into custody early this morning, is Steven Prior, age 35. The second suspect, which the Sheriff's Office needs the public's help in locating, is Winston Barnes, age 25.

Barnes is wanted on three warrants; Unlawful Use of a Criminal Instrument - Third Degree Felony; Theft of Property - Less Than $200,000 (ATM) - Second Degree Felony; and Evading Arrest - Class A Misdemeanor.

 Anyone who has information on the location of Winston Barnes is urged to call the Smith County Sheriff's Office at 903-566-6600.

The SCSO wants to thank the Tyler PD, Lindale PD, East Texas Auto Theft Task Force and Smith County CID and Patrol for doing an outstanding job. The SCSO expects other burglaries to be cleared from this investigation.


(FROM SMITH COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT) - Today at approximately 2:41 a.m., the Smith County Sheriff's Office received a 911 call from an individual who reported that they were observing two men who were using what appeared to be a cutting torch on the outdoor ATM machine at the Kelly Federal Credit Union on Highway 31 West.

Multiple Smith County Sheriff's Deputies responded to the call and both men fled. Assistance was requested from the Tyler Police Department and three units responded.

During the search, one man, whose name is not yet being released, was found hiding behind a nearby business and was arrested. After a two-hour search, the second man was not found and the search was suspended. The first man is being questioned regarding the second man's identity.

"I want to praise the citizen who called in this attempted ATM theft," said Sheriff Larry Smith. "This individual saw something and immediately called it in and then stayed on the line with us to tell us what they were seeing, which was instrumental in us catching the first individual and I'm sure will help us find the second individual. I am grateful for Smith County citizens like this person who are willing to assist law enforcement in keeping everyone safe."

Sheriff Smith no additional information will be released until the man in custody has been interviewed.


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