Two men were arrested early Tuesday morning after one reportedly attempted to cut a catalytic converter off of a work truck parked near Supreme Storage Units on Old Highway 99.

Authorities were called to a report of a loud grinding noise coming from the area of the storage facility. A deputy with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office and a Roseburg police officer responded at around 1:45 a.m. and could hear what sounded like a Sawzall coming from somewhere in the area of a line of vehicles parked near the facility, according to a court document.

After the deputy identified himself, he reported hearing footsteps and the sound of a car door closing. The deputy approached the passenger side of the car and detained a man sitting in the driver's seat, while the officer found a man apparently hiding under the work truck.

That man was identified as Dylan Fritts, 27, of Roseburg.

The officer investigated the underside of the truck and saw that the exhaust pipe had been cut on both ends of the catalytic converter, and a blue Kobalt brand Sawzall was still under the truck.

A search of the first man, Mark Tidwell, 59, of Winston, yielded two knives, one of which he claimed belonged to Fritts. Tidwell told the officers that the Sawzall was his, according to court documents.

Both men were transported to the Douglas County Jail and appeared in court Tuesday afternoon. After arraignment, Fritts was formally charged with second-degree theft, first-degree criminal mischief and possession of a burglary tool, with bail set at $10,000. Fritts was still in custody as of Wednesday morning.

Tidwell faces a single charge of being a felon in possession of a restricted weapon and was granted conditional release later Tuesday.

Donovan Brink can be reached at dbrink@nrtoday.com and 541-957-4219.

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Cops and Courts Reporter

Donovan Brink is the cops and courts reporter for The News-Review.

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