CASTLE HOT SPRINGS, AZ - A father and son accused of trying to steal metal from a ranch north of the Valley last week are now in custody.
The Yavapai County Sheriff's Office reported that a rancher was driving his tractor to a cattle corral on Layton Ranch in Castle Hot Springs when he noticed a white truck with some large acetylene torch bottles and other tools in the bed of the truck.
Because there had been prior metal thefts on the property, the rancher followed the truck to get a license number.
The truck eventually stopped due to road conditions and the rancher blocked the vehicle and spoke to them about the metal thefts, telling them law enforcement had been called.
The two suspects ran off into nearby hills and after an extensive air and ground search, one man, 20-year-old Colton Gifford was taken into custody. By then it was determined the truck belonged to Colton's father, Bart Giffords; the search for Bart was unsuccessful.
The rancher had told deputies a large steel tank used for watering cattle had been taken out of a nearby corral and cut into several pieces. Deputies found evidence at the scene connecting Colton to the theft, along with a bag containing what appeared to be methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.
Colton, from Peoria, was booked into the Yavapai County Detention Center on charges including theft, burglary, criminal trespass, criminal damage and possession of drugs.
The YCSO said Bart Giffords turned himself into deputies on January 20. He was booked into the same jail on numerous theft and drug charges.
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