Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

Latest News

November 7, 2012

Tailgate thieves nabbed by police

Corsicana — It was just old-fashioned dogged police work that helped nab the tailgate thieves on Oct. 28 in Corsicana.

On Friday, Oct. 26, a security camera in Ennis picked up a thief stealing two high-end tailgates off pickups at the Ford dealership, according to Det. Sgt. Jason York of the Ennis Police Department.

“The tailgates had the backup cameras and the steps all built in. The combined value was $8,800,” York explained. “I got on Craigslist that Saturday and found an ad that said they had them in Central Texas. They had them for $350 each. They said they were new.”

Sending them an e-mail from his cell phone, York tried to get a meeting with the seller. The seller, who has now been identified as Russell Orville Jenkins Jr., 43, of Austin, said he was meeting another buyer at the Home Depot in Corsicana, but would text back if the deal didn’t go through.

It didn’t.

On Sunday, York and his family were preparing to go to Waco to help a friend move a deck when he got a text from the suspect saying he still had the tailgate in Corsicana but was leaving for Dallas shortly.

Keeping up the story, York said he was buying the tailgate for his cousin, but was in a hurry. Jenkins said to meet him at the Colonial Inn in Corsicana.

“I said it’s my cousin’s problem, he tore up his tailgate because I drive a Dodge and I didn’t want to show up for a Ford tailgate in a Dodge,” York said. “I contacted Mark Nanny with the Corsicana Police Department, and he got me in touch with Todd Morris.”

It was actually Morris who met with the suspect at the Colonial Inn. Jenkins had five tailgates in a rented truck, but he showed Morris four more in the motel room.

Jenkins and his girlfriend, Tracy Holland, 45, also of Austin, were stealing the parts from nearby towns, taking them to a central location, using plastic wrap and a heat gun to “shrink wrap” them and selling them as new on Craigslist. In addition to hitting the Ennis Ford dealership, the same thieves are suspects in a similar theft from the Athens Ford dealership that same night. Athens lost five tailgates that night, Ennis lost two.

York got there after Morris had been given the grand tour, in time for the arrest and to help read the couple their rights before they were taken to jail in Corsicana. The Corsicana charges were receiving stolen goods. The pair was transferred to Ennis for the more serious charges of theft over $1,500. Charges were filed both from Ennis and Athens.

“He confessed to doing Ennis Friday night,” York said.

Holland’s job was the business manager, and they’re getting warrants now for the couple’s computers and cell phones.

“She did all the e-mails and kept a log of who they were supposed to meet and where,” York said. “She solved my case for me.”

Both Holland and Jenkins were booked in Ennis, but they’ve both posted the required $10,000 bond and are now back in Austin, York said.

The couple apparently used Corsicana as a kind of hub, renting a motel room where they would shrink wrap and store the tailgates, and then hitting the surrounding towns to steal the parts. They didn’t steal from Corsicana, according to Corsicana Det. Rex Givens.

“We haven’t found where they stole any from Corsicana,” Givens said. “It looks like they were getting a motel room in a small town and hitting towns close by, rather than the town where they’re at.”


Janet Jacobs may be reached via e-mail at Want to “sound off” to this article? E-mail:

Text Only
Latest News
  • 7-23-14 pianos main.jpg Public pianos invite players

    Corsicana has always been a musical town, with emphasis on country and western, rock and roll, bluegrass and Gospel, but now the parks and recreation department is moving towards bringing music to the masses in a different way. They’re going to put pianos downtown, on the sidewalks for anyone to play at random.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Navarro County 4-H Club holds event

    Texas A&M AgriLife Extention will hold Summer Exploration Days at the Navarro County Expo on Tuesday, July 29 from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m.

    July 22, 2014

  • New date for IPL Job Fair announced

    Tarrant Regional Water District IPL (integrated pipe line) Project will hold a Job Fair from 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014 at The Cook Center.

    July 22, 2014

  • Making voting easier

    A new county-wide voting system would let voters cast a ballot at any polling place on election day, eliminating the need to drive to a specific precinct to vote.

    July 22, 2014

  • Aaron Tidwell Tidwell tapped for top Mildred High post

    A baseball coach at heart, about a year ago Aaron Tidwell began to seriously focus on education administration. He just didn’t think an opportunity would present itself so soon. Mildred Independent School District board members approved the 31-year-old Corsicana native as the high school’s new principal Monday night.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • OCIW treasure Mantle worthy: Oil City presented with Texas Treasure Business Award

    Maybe Oil City Iron Works is worth double the treasure. After all, the local icon honored Monday with a state award for employers in business for 50 years has actually been around for 128.

    July 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-22-14 meth raid.jpg Five arrested in meth raid

    The Corsicana Police Department executed a raid on an alleged meth house Saturday afternoon, and it was done in about 45 minutes, all but the paperwork.
    “That part is on-going, reports and follow-up,” said Police Chief Randy Bratton on Monday.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Perry orders 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to border

    AUSTIN — Gov. Rick Perry says he's deploying as many as 1,000 National Guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border after growing tied of "lip service" from the federal government.

    July 21, 2014

  • 7-19-14 plane leaving.jpg F-4 jet leaving Navarro College for new Florida home

    It stood for years in front of the Cook Center at Navarro College. Now, like so many “retirees,” it’s Florida bound.
    It took several days to partially dismantle the F-4 Phantom fighter jet enough to travel, but it was done this week.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • Mildred to consider Tidwell as principal

    The Mildred Independent School District Board of Trustees will consider appointing current baseball coach Aaron Tidwell as the new Mildred High School principal when the group meets in regular session Monday.

    July 20, 2014

AP Video
Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme Former NTSB Official: FAA Ban 'prudent' EPA Gets Hip With Kardashian Tweet Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands Biden Decries Voting Restrictions in NAACP Talk Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel
Twitter Updates