A man ended up behind bars Monday evening after a Batesville Police officer found him with a motorcycle that had been reported as stolen.
According to court information, earlier this week a Biggers, Ark. man visited the Batesville Police Department and reported two vehicles had recently been stolen from his residence. The man said he had received information the vehicles — one of which was a black 2016 Kawasaki ZX1000 motorcycle — might be in the Batesville area.
On Monday evening, BPD officer Jeffrey Tate noticed a motorcycle matching the description of the Kawasaki in the parking lot of the fuel station at the intersection of East Main Street and White Drive. After the officer ran the plate on the motorcycle, it came back not matching the bike, the court papers reported.
Tate then observed a man come around the corner and approach the motorcycle. When the officer asked the man if the motorcycle belonged to him, the man said, “No,” and then walked into the station. After following the man and interviewing him further, Tate asked again if he had been riding the motorcycle. This time, the man said “Yes.”
Tate and the man returned to the motorcycle where the VIN was then run through dispatch. The number came back to a stolen motorcycle from Randolph County.
The man, identified as Johnathan W. Paulman, 29, was taken into custody and transported to the Independence County Detention Facility.
In an April 14 interview with investigators from the Batesville Police Department and the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office, Paulman said he was contacted by his brother to go to a Batesville apartment complex, pick up the Kawasaki by finding the key under the fuel cap, and then meet his brother at the station on White Drive, court records said.
Asked why he appeared nervous when talking to Tate, Paulman told investigators he knew the bike was likely stolen since his brother had recently been released from prison and did not have any money.
Paulman was charged with one count of theft by receiving. He was also charged as a habitual offender since he has previously been convicted of four or more felonies.
Image via Independence County Sheriff’s Department
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