BLUFFTON, SC (WTOC) - Two Bluffton men have been arrested after undercover officers bought electronics that were reported stolen from recent area burglaries.
Steven Lamar Stapleton, 39, and Alexander Staple, 33, were arrested Tuesday when a search warrant was being served at a Shady Glen home.
Investigators with the Bluffton Police Dept. and the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office arranged an undercover operation in the last week that resulted in the recovery of two stolen computers, according to the sheriff's office.
On Dec. 8, investigators made with Staple that netted a computer that was reported stolen from Volunteers in Medicine on Nov. 21.
On Tuesday, another stolen computer was bought from Stapleton. That computer had been reported stolen less than 24 hours earlier from the Bluffton Veterinary Clinic.
"We're just glad the computer was recovered and no one was seriously hurt," says Dr. John Nance from the Bluffton Veterinary Clinic.
These undercover buys led investigators to get a search warrant for the Shady Glen Lane home that's shared by Staple and Stapleton, according to the sheriff's office.
Evidence was collected during the search that will be examined and further charges may be pending.
DNA samples were collected from Staple and Stapleton and are being analyzed by the sheriff's office Forensic Laboratory to use in another Bluffton Police Dept. burglary investigation.
Both men have been charged under the Property Crime Enhancement statute, which allows for increased penalty for those who are convicted of three or more previous property crimes, according to the sheriff's office.
Both of the men have prior convictions including burglary, parole violation, shoplifting, and possession of marijuana, so the statute is applicable.