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Jail inmate accused in theft of pickup truck

By Joe Beck -- jbeck@nvdaily.com

An inmate in the Rockingham County jail is facing charges of vehicle theft, burglary and vandalism after the Shenandoah County Sheriff's Office linked him to an abandoned pickup truck discovered in the George Washington National Forest.

Jonathan Michael Morris, 25, was charged after the Sheriff's Office obtained an arrest warrant against him Wednesday, said Lt. Tom Shelton of the Sheriff's Office.

Shelton said Morris is accused of burglarizing the Great North Mountain property management company at 2565 Orkney Grade in Basye on the night of March 7. He removed a vehicle ignition key from a closet in the building and stole a 1999 white Ford pickup truck belonging to the company, Shelton said.

Shelton said a hiker in the national forest came upon the truck the next day. It was "hung up" between two downed trees, he said, about three miles up a Forest Service road in Rockingham County and another 50 to 75 yards off the road.

Shelton said the Rockingham County Sheriff's Office, which was holding Morris in the county jail on other charges, provided information that led Shenandoah County investigators to interview him on April 9.

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