Man arrested after search of home

By Andy Winemiller -


A Mount Airy man has been charged with numerous crimes after sheriff’s deputies executed a search warrant at his home.

According to the Surry County Sheriff’s Office, deputies arrested Benjamin Jason Gates, 42, at his 125 Hall Street address, on Thursday after an investigation into a larceny of a motor vehicle led deputies to Gates.

Investigators were following up on a tip on Thursday into Wednesday’s larceny, which occurred at 1994 Westfield Road, according to a statement.

Detective J.D. Briles said when a patrol deputy arrived at the Hall Street address, the officer noticed stolen property in plain view. The deputy alerted detectives, who immediately petitioned for a search warrant. Gates was present at the home, but left while deputies awaited receipt of the warrant.

However, Briles said Gates remained in the area, even “crawling through the woods” to get a peek at what deputies were doing. Deputies did not yet have probable cause or a warrant for Gates’ arrest until their search was complete.

Once deputies searched the home they “recovered stolen property to include, electronics, automotive parts, and garden supplies,” according to the press release.

Briles said Gates was arrested a few blocks from the home without incident after investigators located the stolen items.

Gates is charged with breaking and entering a motor vehicle, larceny after breaking and entering, possession of stolen property, possession of cocaine, and possession of methamphetamine. Authorities said the investigation is continuing.

Previously he has been convicted of nearly 40 crimes, including breaking and entering, resisting arrest, larceny, possession of drug paraphernalia and assault. He is also awaiting trial on a number of other offenses including probation violations, felon in possession of a firearm and drug charges.

Gates is being held under a $50,000 secured bond and awaits trial at the Surry County Detention Center. His next scheduled court appearance is in Superior Court on Aug. 29.


By Andy Winemiller

Reach Andy at 415-4698.

Reach Andy at 415-4698.

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