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MailTribune.com
  • Stolen handgun leads to charges for two local felons with histories of theft and drug possession

    Kenneth Duane Vinzant Jr., 30, and Crystal Carol Hoyt, 29, charged with theft and being felons in possession of a firearm
  • Two convicted felons are back in jail after allegedly swiping a handgun from a family member's Central Point home and selling it earlier this week, police said.
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  • Two convicted felons are back in jail after allegedly swiping a handgun from a family member's Central Point home and selling it earlier this week, police said.
    Kenneth Duane Vinzant Jr., 30, and Crystal Carol Hoyt, 29, were held in the Jackson County Jail Thursday on charges of first-degree theft and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Vinzant is held on additional charges of possession of heroin and supplying contraband, jail records show, and his bail is set at $10,000. Hoyt is held without bail because of an additional parole violation.
    Investigators from the Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement Task Force received a tip May 9 that the pair had stolen and sold a handgun. Vinzant and Hoyt are accused of stealing a 9 mm Glock from a home in the 400 block of West Pine Street, where family members of Hoyt live.
    Officers went to the home to check on the report. The gun's owners did not know it had been stolen, police said.
    "It had been locked away," Lt. Brett Johnson said.
    Hoyt — Vinzant's girlfriend, according to police — was at the home. Police arrested her there on the parole-violation charge.
    Police tracked the stolen weapon to a home in the 6800 block of Oakhurst Avenue. The purchaser did not know the weapon had been stolen and returned it to police.
    "They were very cooperative," Johnson said.
    Vinzant was arrested Monday when police saw him driving in Medford. When he was booked into jail, he was found to have a small amount of heroin. A drug-sniffing dog also indicated drugs might be in his car. After obtaining a warrant, police searched the vehicle Tuesday, seizing scales and a cellphone.
    "We believe (the gun sale) was to try to obtain funding for drug use, drug purchases," Johnson said, adding additional drug charges could be brought against Vinzant after the phone seized during the vehicle search is analyzed.
    Court records show Vinzant's past convictions include driving under the influence of intoxicants and drug possession. Hoyt's convictions include second-degree theft, third-degree assault and possession of oxycodone and methamphetamine, records show.
    Reach reporter Ryan Pfeil at 541-776-4468 or by email at rpfeil@mailtribune.com.
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