BY C.L. HARMON
Although the legal term is Knowingly Concealing Stolen Property, it is technically still just good old-fashioned cattle rustling.Whatever one may call it, it’s illegal and a Mannford man has been convicted of such a crime. Ricky Dale Bethel was actually charged with several crimes after his arrest in March of last year. Those charges included: Unlawful Possession of Paraphernalia, Manufacture of CDS with Intent, Possession of Firearm After Felony Conviction, Maintaining Place for Keeping/Selling CDS, Possession of CDS, Stolen Property Buy/Receive/Conceal and Trafficking Amphetamine or Methamphetamine. Bethel pleaded guilty and counts one and two were dismissed. Count three was a sentence of five years in the Department of Corrections. Counts four and five dismissed. Counts six and seven were also five year sentences, which run concurrent with count three. The Creek County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO)and the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture (ODOA) served a search warrant for the Bethel property last March 12. Bethel admitted to having four stolen heifers and one bull, along with other stolen property on his property. Bethel further admitted that he and Bryan Case had branded over the original cattle brand, according to the affidavit. The cattle were stolen out of Kansas, according to the affidavit. Bethel also told authorities that the cattle and several other stolen items had been brought to the property by Case. ODOA is currently working that case, the affidavit reads. As the property was further searched, law enforcement found several areas throughout the residence where it was apparent that marijuana had been smoked. In addition two pipes were found that appeared to be used to smoke ‘drugs’ and a .20 gauge shotgun was found near Bethel’s bed. A run of his criminal history showed he has two prior felony convictions.