A local farmer catches a thief red-handed. He says he’s been targeted by the same man for two years.
The suspect, Howard Johnson, is behind bars after police say he tried to steal more than $1,000 worth of flowers from Sooner Produce.
Sooner Produce, near 31st and Harvard, is just a small stand that operates six months out of the year.
The owner says he got so fed up with being stolen from that he decided to camp out nearby all night hoping to catch the thief.
“You work hard. You try to make an honest living. You’re trying to operate and offer a high-quality product to the customers, and then some loser comes and steals it!” exclaimed Jeff Kellogg.
Kellogg works at the stand and says the owner decided to camp there overnight after years of dealing with what he claims was the same thief showing up again and again.
“This season, lo and behold, who starts showing up in our videos again? The same person, the same vehicle,” Kellogg said.
According to Kellogg, the man had never been caught so his boss decided that surveillance video wasn’t enough. He picked a night the stand was typically targeted, then watched and waited.
Sure enough, he says, the suspect showed up like clockwork. He says they saw the man loading merchandise into the bed of a green truck.
Kellogg says “he was wearing a cap that said ‘Scoundrel’ on it and it was the same fellow, same car, truck.”
Kellogg and the owner say the arrest is a big relief, but they’ll keep their eyes out for any more opportunists.
“If you’re an honest customer, we’re delighted to help you. If you’re a crook, we’ll get you,” stated Kellogg.
Johnson is a felon and has an extensive criminal history going back nearly 30 years.
He was booked into the Tulsa County Jail on several complaints, including larceny.