"Operation Turning Tables"

Anderson Sheriff Office explains operation

Patrick Gentry
July 19, 2018 - 5:53 pm

Beginning in June, 2018, the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division, along with various organized retail crime investigators, initiated an investigation into organized retail theft and stolen property fencing in the Anderson County area.  The investigation identified shoplifters who were stealing large amounts of merchandise from various retail stores in Anderson and then selling the merchandise for a fraction of their retail value to other individuals, commonly referred to as “fences”.  These individuals would the resell the merchandise at flea markets for profit.

The investigation identified Troy Fowler, 75, of Piedmont, SC., William “Billy” O’Leary, 44, of Anderson, SC., and Peggy O’Leary, 41, also of Anderson, SC., as suspected “fences” in this operation.  On July 12, 2018, search warrants were executed at the properties belonging to the O’Leary’s and Fowler.  As a result of these search warrants, an estimated $121,997 in stolen merchandise was recovered from both locations.  Detectives also recovered a stolen four-wheeler that had been reported stolen from Abbeville County.  All three subjects were arrested and charged with organized retail theft. 

The investigative team was comprised of Detectives from the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office Criminal and Special Investigations Divisions, along with organized retail crime investigators from Home Depot, CVS, T.J. Maxx, Belk, and Publix. 

It is estimated that retailers suffered a combined total loss of between 9 - 12 million dollars over a five-year period due to these subjects buying from shoplifters. 

(Peggy O'Leary) 

(Troy Lee Fowler)

(William James Oleary)

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