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PAULDING — Local authorities teamed in Paulding County to arrest two persons who allegedly tried to break into a rural home just south of Defiance.

Bobby Thompson, 42, and William Wehby Jr., 53, both of Scott, were located and taken into custody without incident, according to Paulding County Sheriff Jason Landers.

“This was a great example of multiple agencies working together and the community being alert and providing us information,” stated Landers.

Thompson and Wehby had not been formally charged as of 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to Landers, but charges will be filed into Paulding County Municipal Court for their expected initial appearance via video at 9 a.m. Friday.

The investigation began at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, explained Landers, when his deputies were dispatched to 23092 Ohio 66 — one mile west of Arthur in northeast Paulding County — for a breaking and entering in-progress.

The landowner had arrived at the uninhabited property and discovered two adult men stealing goods. One male fled immediately while the other got in his vehicle and tried to drive away, but became stuck in a ditch and fled on foot, according to Landers.

A perimeter was set up with county sheriff’s deputies and Ohio Highway Patrol troopers while a Patrol aircraft was dispatched to the scene, the sheriff related. Deputies, troopers and a state wildlife officer searched the area for nearly three hours before clearing the scene around 5:30 p.m. after being unable to locate the suspects in a thick woods.

However, at approximately 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, landowners near the intersection of roads 191 and 178 in Auglaize Township called the sheriff’s office to report two men walking in a field and entering a wooded area, according to Landers. Law enforcement responded, searched the woods and located Thompson and Wehby, taking them into custody without incident.

Besides the aforementioned agencies and officers, the Oakwood Police Department also provided assistance.

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