Midstate deputy makes arrest in city hall burglaries

An alert Telfair County deputy is credited with the first two arrests in what authorities believe is a multicounty burglary ring that targeted city halls in small communities in recent months.

After Tuesday night’s latest break-in at the Rentz City Hall in Laurens County, witnesses gave investigators the description of a maroon Toyota pickup that led to a traffic stop south of McRae later that night, said Capt. Stan Wright of the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office.

“This deputy was doing a great job. He was really paying attention,” Wright said. “He was on the ball and we appreciate it.”

Eastman’s Buddy Eugene Profit, 54, and Roderick McLaughlin, 48, of McRae, were arrested and charged with the most recent burglary at Rentz City Hall, which was also broken into in late January.

“There are other charges pending and other arrests,” Wright said.

The investigators are working with the GBI to determine if the men are linked to similar crimes.

Dodge County investigators are trying to find the culprits who broke into Chester City Hall during the weekend of Jan. 23 and Chauncey City Hall sometime during the night of Jan. 24.

In Telfair County, Milan City Hall was hit, and burglars also entered the City Hall building in Lumber City. The City Hall in Cadwell also has been broken into in Laurens County.

To contact writer Liz Fabian, call 744-4303.