Indictments handed down in cattle theft scam
A Lampasas County Grand Jury handed down a double indictment March 14 against Mark Ray, 57, of Aurora, Colorado. The indictments, Theft by Deception and False Statement to Obtain Property, are both third-degree felonies and come after an investigation led by TSCRA Special Ranger Marvin Wills.
The indictments stem from a cattle transaction between Ray and a Stephens County, Texas, victim in December 2016. Ray is accused of persuading the victim to invest in 52 head of cattle, which he alleged to be located in Lampasas County, Texas. The cattle were then said to be relocated to a ranch in Pawhuska, Okla., where they were to be cared for and later sold.
When the victim failed to receive his interest in the cattle, he became suspicious and contacted authorities. Special Ranger Wills launched an investigation with the assistance of Lampasas County Sheriff’s Office Detective David Thorp and the Lampasas County District Attorney’s Office.
On Feb. 6, 2018, the Lampasas County Justice of the Peace issued an arrest warrant for Ray as a result of the investigation. The recommended bond was set at $100,000, however Ray requested a bond reduction hearing, and on Feb. 16, 2018, State District Judge John Gauntt reduced it to a $10,000 personal recognizance bond. Ray was booked into the Lampasas County Jail and released.
Wills and TSCRA would like to thank Detective Thorp, the Lampasas County Sheriff’s Office, Lampasas County District Attorney’s Office and everyone involved with the investigation.