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Arrests made in Port Arthur Public Library statue theft case
PORT ARTHUR- by Haley Bull
Three men are charged with second degree felony theft, accused of taking a statue from the front of the Port Arthur Public Library and selling it in part as scrap metal.
A box filled with what's left of the statue valued at $120,000, cut into pieces, sits in the back of the library. In the front, is an empty statue base. It's been that way since February.
Now, two men are behind bars and police are looking for a third in connection to the theft.
KFDM News spoke to Josh Manaway Sr., 52, as officers took him from the Port Arthur Police Department to a car to go to the Jefferson County Jail.
"I didn't take no f----- statue," Manaway said when asked if he took the statue.
"Your mama took the statue," he said when asked if he knew it was illegal.
Officers arrested him at his house Wednesday morning. Investigators said his house was set up to cut apart metal.
"He was in his driveway, believe it or not, they were cutting up metal in his driveway when we got there," Port Arthur Police Sergeant Scott Gaspard said.
Police are looking for his son, 28-year old Josh Manaway Jr., who was also charged with second degree felony theft.
The third suspect, Terry Rogers, 42, is in jail on an unrelated theft charge.
"This is for the citizens of Port Arthur. It was theirs and I'm glad we were able to recover it and I hope that it's actually repairable," Gaspard said.
Last month, officers recovered pieces of the statue at a scrap metal business in Liberty County. Investigators said documents show Manaway Sr. sold some of the statue pieces for about $300.
Now, he's behind bars, among three suspects charged, while investigators work to piece the statue back together.
If convicted, the men could face up to 20 years in jail. A judge set bond at $50,000 for each suspect.