By November 2, 2017 0 Comments Read More →

Southport Chop Shops Out Of Business

Kristopher Walker

Kristopher Walker – Suspected Chop Shop Operator

The Bay County Sheriff’s Office received numerous reports in October of stolen motorcycles in the Southport area.

On October 20, 2017, responding to an anonymous tip, BCSO deputies went to a residence on Hamrick Road in Southport. The deputies could see a motorcycle within the residence and contacted the Criminal Investigations Division. Investigators responded to the scene and conducted a search warrant.

While there, investigators observed a man drive up to the residence on a motorcycle. Investigators determined the motorcycle was stolen. The man riding the motorcycle was unaware it was stolen, and stated the bike had been given to him by Thomas Thompson. Also while investigators were at the residence on Hamrick, a man rode up on a bicycle. His name was Thomas Warren Burkett. The extent of Burkett’s involvement in the chop shop was unclear at the time. He did have an outstanding warrant and was arrested. Investigators later discovered Burkett was indeed involved in the chop shop.

Thomas Warren Burkett

Thomas Warren Burkett

During the search warrant, numerous parts to other stolen motorcycles were located. Right next to the stolen parts was the driver’s license of Thomas Thompson.

Further investigation uncovered the involvement of Kristofer Walker. Walker was believed operating a second chop shop in his garage on 1st Street, in Southport.

A search warrant was obtained for Walker’s residence. Within the garage, and throughout the property, parts and identifying features to other stolen motorcycles were located. Numerous firearms and ammunition were also recovered throughout the property as well, and a criminal history check of Walker revealed him to be a convicted felon. The investigation revealed that Thompson, Walker, and Thomas Warren Burkett would diligently work through the night to strip the motorcycles of parts and identifying features, and move them to other locations. All the bikes are believed to have been stolen by Thomas Thompson.

Thomas Tompson

Thomas Tompson

As a result of this investigation, two automotive chop shops were shut down. When located in a bar on Hwy. 79, Thompson was found to be in possession of another stolen motorcycle. Thompson, age 27, of 7205 Sparrow Road, Southport, was charged with Operating a Chop Shop, numerous counts of Grand Theft Auto, and felony Criminal Mischief.

Kristofer Walker was located in the Youngstown area. Walker, age 32, was charged with Operating a Chop Shop, Principle to Grand Theft Auto, Convicted Felon in Possession of a Firearm and Ammunition, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.

Thomas Warren Burkett was originally arrested at the chop shop on Hamrick in Southport. Burkett, age 28, of 6510 Hwy. 2301, was also charged with Principle to Grand Theft Auto, and Operating a Chop Shop.

One stolen motorcycle has not been located, and is believed to have been wrecked by Thompson somewhere in the Southport area. Anyone with information regarding the location of this motorcycle is encouraged to contact the Bay County Sheriff’s Office at 747-4700.

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