Missing goatsBW

Two goats were pictured after being discovered in a rural Fresno home by Fresno County Sheriff’s detectives.

Detectives with the Fresno County Sheriff’s Ag Task Force on March 25 arrested a 75-year-old Fresno man on suspicion of stealing goats owned by a 4-H club in Kingsburg

Manuel Hernandez was booked into the Fresno County Jail for possession of stolen property, as well as outstanding warrants from driving on a suspended license.  His bail is set at $11,000.

On March 25, ATF detectives received a tip through Valley Crime Stoppers stating some recently stolen goats were being kept at a ranch located at 1279 W.  North Ave. in Fresno.  Detectives arrived at the property and found 18 goats in pens. They identified five of them as belonging to members of the Kingsburg 4-H club, which had a March 11 theft report on file with the Sheriff’s Office.

The 4-H club now has recovered all nine of its stolen goats, four were found roaming along a road days after being taken.

Two of the other goats on this property were determined to belong to another person who had filed a theft report with the Sheriff’s Office.  All seven goats were returned to their respective owners.

It has not been determined whether or not the remaining 11 goats were stolen. However, as a safety precaution, detectives transported those goats to a boarding facility to allow extra time to try and track down their potential owners.

If you are a citizen who had your goats stolen and would like to see if any of the 11 goats might be yours, please contact the Ag Task Force right away.

Detectives assigned to the Ag Task Force continued their investigation into this series of goat thefts.

From Jan. 9 to March 11, there have been nine different reports of goats being stolen. A total of 70 goats, totaling $28,000 in losses, have gone missing from different private properties in the area between Easton and Riverdale.

Ag Task Force detectives also are working with investigators in Kings and Tulare counties to try and generate leads in these cases. As of March 26, seven cases remain open, with 59 goats outstanding.

Anyone with information on  cases of goat theft is urged to contact the Ag Task Force at (559) 600-8150, Crime Stoppers at (559) 498-7867 or online at valleycrimestoppers.org. You will remain anonymous and may receive a cash reward.

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