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Two Morrow County car theft defendants arrested in Georgia

Phil Wright

East Oregonian

Published on February 16, 2018 5:31PM

Two of three defendants facing charges in Morrow County for vehicle theft and more in October are in a jail in Georgia.

Buddy James Buoy, 42, and Julia Rachell Kraus, 37, both of Portland, ended up in the Houston County Detention Center in Perry, Georgia, on Feb. 8 after the Houston County Sheriff’s Office and the Perry Police Department arrested them for theft by receiving stolen property. Morrow County District Attorney Justin Nelson said his office is working on a nationwide warrant to extradite the pair to face local charges. But that is going to take a while because Houston County gets to deal with them first.

“They have the hold, so we can’t supersede their hold,” Nelson said.

According to the Morrow County Sheriff’s Office and court records, Buoy, Kraus and Michelle Carol McLean, also of Portland, stole five newer model vehicles from two Washington dealers on Oct. 31. Police found three of the vehicles and caught McLean first in Boardman. Buoy and Kraus were driving two other vehicles and led officers on a high-speed chase that ended in southern Morrow County after they each crashed.

The Morrow County District Attorney’s Office charged each with five counts of first-degree aggravated theft, and charged Buoy and Krause with reckless driving, attempted fleeing and multiple counts of criminal mischief and trespassing. McLean also has one count of unauthorized use of a vehicle.

State court records show Kraus has open cases throughout Oregon, including in Umatilla County for fleeing police, and has multiple warrants.

Buoy, Kraus and McLean signed release agreements in December to get out of the Pendleton jail. According to those agreements, they could not have contact with each other or leave Oregon. Nelson said he did not know what led Buoy and Kraus to Georgia but speculated they may be involved in a larger criminal operation.

He also said the third defendant, McLean, has been making good on her release agreement, calling into the court and staying in treatment. Her next pretrial hearing is March


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