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Pumpkin Patch Theft Arrest: 2 Men Accused of Taking ATM Containing $19K at Redlands Farm

Two men are in custody after an October theft at a Redlands pumpkin patch where they allegedly used a rental van to steal an ATM containing $19,000, authorities announced Wednesday.

One of the suspects, 48-year-old Eddie Carter of Chino, was arrested a week after the incident that happened the afternoon of Oct. 18 at the Live Oak Canyon Pumpkin Farm, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

The second suspect, 42-year-old Jason Metz of Pomona, has been at the Men’s Central Jail in Los Angeles since Oct. 29 for an unrelated case, county inmate records show.

On Dec. 30, investigators identified him as a suspect in the Redlands crime, the Sheriff’s Department said.

According to detectives, Carter and Metz drove to an ATM at the pumpkin patch, cut a security cord and pulled the machine into the rental van they were using.

Later, surveillance video recorded them dumping the empty machine behind a business in Calimesa, the Sheriff’s Department said.

The ATM was “cut open” and about $19,000 was “removed,” the agency said.

Chino Police Department officers found Carter within their jurisdiction about a week later allegedly driving the van involved, which belongs to Budget Rental Car.

Authorities arrested him on suspicion of grand theft, as well as for a warrant in connection with an attempted robbery that occurred in Orange County.

Police also linked him to the pumpkin patch theft in Redlands and recovered $2,000 of stolen money from him, according to officials.

Detectives said they collected forensic evidence from the van and on Dec. 30, identified Metz as Carter’s accomplice.

Carter, already in custody in L.A. County, was also wanted in San Bernardino County for stalking, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

Authorities provided no further details about their criminal history.

The Redlands case remains under investigation, and the Sheriff’s Department urged anyone with information to call Detective Madril at the Yucaipa station at 909-918-2005. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call the WeTip hotline at at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or visit www.wetip.com.

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