Three Arrested For Four-Wheeler Thefts in Jersey County

By Benjamin Cox on September 9, 2023 at 7:37am

Two people from Jerseyville and one from Alton were arrested this week after a multi-county investigation into stolen four-wheelers.

According to a press release from the Jersey County Sheriff’s Department, on Wednesday morning, Jersey County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a report of two men near a four-wheeler believed to have run out of gas in the area of Central Road, north of Illinois Route 16. When deputies arrived, they found an abandoned Suzuki 4-wheeler in the ditch. During a search of the area, deputies located a woman, later identified as 26-year old Ashley J. Fulmer of Jerseyville, walking along the roadway. Deputies are said to have stopped and spoken with Fulmer.

At the same time, another deputy located a vehicle in the same area, and performed a stop to speak with the driver, later identified as 51-year old Heath E. Blaine, also of Jerseyville. According to the report, both individuals gave conflicting stories about the four-wheeler and their reasons for being in the area. Because deputies were unaware that the four-wheeler had been reported stolen at the time, Fulmer and Blaine were released upon their own recognizance after speaking with deputies pending additional investigation. The four-wheeler was then towed.

Subsequent to follow-up on the investigation, the Jersey County Sheriff’s Department conducted multiple interviews of residents in the area and posted photographs of the four-wheeler on social media. According to the report, within a few hours of the four-wheeler being posted, the owner stepped forward and identified the vehicle as being stolen and the public also provided additional information. Deputies eventually were able to determine that two four-wheelers had been taken from the Coon Creek Road area along the Illinois River.

After further investigation, deputies determined that Fulmer, Blaine, and a third individual identified as 27-year old Schon D. Widman of Alton allegedly stole the four-wheelers, by placing one in the back of a truck while the other was ridden until it ran out of gas. Authorities say that the individuals were attempting to ride the four-wheeler to a residence in southern Greene County. All three individuals were eventually located at a residence in Kane and taken into custody with the assistance of the Greene County Sheriff’s Department. The second stolen four-wheeler was also recovered at that time, according to the report.

Widman, Fulmer, and Blaine have each been charged with two counts of unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle, a Class 2 felony by the Jersey County State’s Attorney’s Office. They remain held at the Jersey County Jail awaiting a first appearance with counsel on Monday in Jersey County Circuit Court.

The Jersey County Sheriff’s Office says if anyone has any further information on the incident to contact them by phone at 618-498-6881.