Police: Drug money fuels Beech Grove construction equipment heist

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BEECH GROVE, Ind. --Two men were arrested for allegedly stealing over $100,000 worth of construction equipment from a Beech Grove business.

According to police, the motive for the heist was to fuel a heroin and methamphetamine addiction.

Neil Couch and  Keith Shepherd put a lot of thought into their plan.

"It certainly looked to be calculated.  It went according to plan at least up until the escape," said Detective Matthew Bragg with the Beech Grove Police Department.

First, the pair allegedly stole a car from "JL Squared" and then drove it to MacAllister Machinery in Beech Grove.

"He knew high ticket values on certain merchandise and targeted those," said Bragg.

Police say cameras at MacAlister's  show what appears to be Couch loading up a truck, trailer, mower and a large piece of construction equipment. The items have an estimated value of about $116,000.  Couch then can be seen tying a chain to the gate and ripping it off.

While the alleged crooks got away, they didn't get very far.  One of the stolen pieces of equipment was outfitted with a GPS tracking device.  The location brought police to a home in Fountain Square on the 400 block of South Hamilton.  Couch and Shepherd were arrested without incident.  A woman was also taken into custody on unrelated warrant charges.

Bragg says the men were motivated by drug money and told police in an interview that they planned to sell the stolen goods for just $2,500.

"It’s disheartening that you have people this severe into an addiction that they would result to this kind of crime," said Bragg.

Beech Grove Police do not think these arrests are connected to a similar construction theft ring in Shelby County.