An unusual crime wave is sweeping through Fresno County: More than 60 goats — valued at roughly $27,000 — have gone missing in the last two months.
There have been seven cases of goat theft since Jan. 7 in an area spanning less than 20 miles, from Easton to Riverdale. Investigators think the thieves are making their move at night, when they’re not likely to be spotted, and rounding up the animals in trucks, said Fresno County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Tony Botti.
The Central Valley typically sees a few livestock thefts each year, Botti said, but 61 animals in two months is highly unusual.
“There’s definitely a trend here, and it’s ticking up,” he said. “A lot of the time, these suspects are using the cover of darkness to pull this off. They can pull up and get through the fence and load them up and go without being seen.”
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