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Arrest Made in N.C. Crab Pot Thefts

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MOREHEAD CITY - An eight-month Marine Patrol investigation into crab pot thefts in the Pasquotank River ended in the arrest of a Chowan County man this week. The case began in April, when commercial fisherman Ut Huynh of Shiloh reported he was missing 50 crab pots he had set in the Pasquotank River. During the next few weeks, Marine Patrol Officer Brian Deanes searched for the stolen crab pots, without success.

Again in August, an employee of Ut Huynh's reported another 85 crab pots stolen from the Pasquotank River. This time, when Deanes and Marine Patrol Officer Dwayne Whealton searched, they found crab pots that matched the description of those belonging to Huynh's stolen pots marked as belonging to T. Hollowell. The pots had been repainted and sections of the buoys had been cut off. The markers on the buoys led Marine Patrol to serve a search warrant and search the home of Travis Wade Hollowell in Tyner, where they found the missing buoy sections engraved with Huynh's boat registration numbers. Marine Patrol issued warrants against Hollowell in Camden County, charging him with felony larceny, misdemeanor larceny and injuring/ destroying/stealing crab pot buoys; and in Chowan County, charging him with felony possession of stolen goods/property, misdemeanor possession of stolen goods/property and injuring/destroying/stealing crab pot buoys.

Hollowell, 30, was arrested Sunday by the Pasquotank County Sheriff's Office and served with the outstanding warrants. He was released from jail on an $8,000 secured bond and awaits his next court appearance, scheduled for tomorrow. In all, Marine Patrol officers recovered 78 pots identified as stolen. The pots had a value of $2,410. Hollowell was also charged on an unrelated warrant in Chowan County for dealing in crabs without a dealer's license. Further charges are pending. For more information, call Capt. Donovan Twyne at 252-473-5734 or