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Pair jailed after bizarre theft

CONROE- Two Conroe men wound up in jail Thursday morning after police responded to a report they were beating something and it was not a drum.

Conroe Police Sgt. Bob Berry said it was around 1:15 a.m. when an officer was dispatched to the 600 block of College Street, where he found a payphone lying on the ground with one white male and one black male allegedly attacking it, presumably in a fruitless attempt to reach the coins inside.

“The phone’s coin box was damaged with scrapes and pry marks and the white male had injuries to his hands,” Berry said.

Ironically, the phone the suspects found so difficult to open belonged to a company named “National Extra Effort Payphones.”

Officers checked area businesses until they located a store that appeared to be missing its payphone about two blocks from the residence.

A witness told police she saw the men transport the payphone to the residence where they were arrested.
The suspects, Terry Allen Brumley, 25, of Conroe and 50-year-old Larry Donnell Moore, also of Conroe were charged with burglary of a coin operated machine, and theft of property, which are both Class A misdemeanors.
Public Data shows Brumley and Moore each have a laundry list of prior convictions.
As of 5 p.m. on Thursday, both men remained held in the Montgomery County Jail in lieu of $1,500 bond for each charge.

It is not yet known if the payphone theft was related to the brazen, but also fruitless, theft of a coin operated air and water machine on the evening of Jan. 9.

Store clerks reportedly watched as someone attached a chain to the machine and drove away dragging it behind them. They did not make it too far with their loot, however, since the chain broke depositing the machine on the roadside a few blocks behind the store.

The storeowner said the thieves were wasting their time anyway, since the machine had been out of order for months.

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