January 25, 1997 in City

Attempted Theft Generates Two Arrests In Valley

By The Spokesman-Review

Monkey business and show business met early Friday in the Spokane Valley. Two people were arrested as a result.

Sheriff’s deputies arrested a man and a juvenile who they said tried to steal a generator from a recreational vehicle that is the home of “Beijing,” a 14-month old movie-making macaque.

In the RV with Beijing were 18 parakeets, seven doves, a macaw and a cockatiel.

The RV belongs to 24-year-old Brian Staples of Clayton, Wash. Staples works for Landmark Productions, a Southern California film company. He trains the animals for television and film appearances.

“If they’d gotten away with the generator, that would have caused great hardship,” Staples said.

The generator heats the RV, so Staples would have had to move his animals, valued at $20,000, to a warm place.

After eating at the Denny’s restaurant at Sprague and Pines at about 4 a.m., Staples went inside the motor home to catch up on work. He heard noise outside, then heard footsteps across the top of the vehicle.

Two people left the scene when Staples emerged from the motor home. He called deputies, gave a description, and the two were caught a short time later.

Deputies arrested Christopher W. Hymes, 18, of 4805 N. Snow Owl in Otis Orchards, and a juvenile for attempted second-degree theft. Hymes was booked into the county jail and the juvenile, 16, was booked into juvenile detention.

It’s the third time burglars have targeted Staples and his animals.

“It’s the first time suspects have ever been caught,” he said. “Man, I got my animals, those guys are in jail - it’s been a good day.”

, DataTimes

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