Two men charged in connection to local burglary

COLUMBIANA – Two men from Columbiana were arrested by the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office and received multiple charges on Wednesday, Nov. 15.

According to a press release from the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, 46-year-old William Michael Benton Jr. and 22-year-old Chance Michael Benton were two of three suspects identified in connection with a local burglary. The press release stated that the third, unnamed male suspect shot himself after deputies entered a residence that they believed housed stolen guns.

Chance Benton 

William Benton Jr.

William Benton Jr., who lists an address on August Road, was charged with receiving stolen property in the first degree and unlawful possession of a controlled substance. Chance Benton, who lists an address on Shelby County 315, was charged with receiving stolen property in the first degree and obstructing governmental operations.

According to court documents, William Benton Jr. and Chance Benton allegedly received a stolen AR-15 rifle, a Glock 23 pistol, a Savage 308 rifle and a Taurus 357 revolver, all of which are worth $2,750 combined. William Benton Jr. was also allegedly found in unlawful possession of testosterone. Chance Benton was also accused of lying to an officer.

The unnamed suspect was treated for his injuries at the scene and flown to a nearby hospital, according to the SCSO. His current condition is unknown.

Receiving stolen property in the first degree is a Class B felony. Alabama law states that William Benton Jr. and Chance Benton could each face two to 20 years in prison if they are convicted.

As of Monday, Nov. 20, both William Benton Jr. and Chance Benton are being held at the Shelby County Jail. William Benton Jr.’s bonds amount to $45,000. Chance Benton is being held on bonds totaling $36,000.

Both of their cases have been assigned to Shelby County District Court Judge Daniel A. Crowson. Both preliminary hearings have been scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on Dec. 7.

The press release stated that the Shelby County Major Crimes Task Force and the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office is continuing to investigate the crime, with full cooperation from the SCSO.

The SCSO is encouraging anyone with additional information about the burglary or the stolen weapons to contact them by calling them directly at 669-4181 or by clicking the “Report Criminal Activity” link on Shelbyso.com.