GARLAND Co., Ark. — A Lake Ouachita boater said he’s offering a $1,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of two men photographed as they stole a boat from a marina over the weekend.

Ron Russell goes to Lake Ouachita on weekends to enjoy the water, but he said thieves made last weekend anything but enjoyable.

“That’s kind of our happy place,” Russell said. “We never really had to worry about things like this happening down there.”

Russell said two men were photographed driving a brown truck and hauling off a boat and a refrigerator. The refrigerator belongs to some of Russell’s friends, and the boat belongs to a young boy.

“He fishes from daylight from dark,” Russell said. “He loves to fish. They stole his boat.”

Russell said the thieves rummaged through boats at the Brandy Mountain Marina in Royal. He first noticed something wrong when he saw a friend’s boat with its door wide open.

“I peeked my head in the boat, and the boat had been ransacked,” Russell said. “I got to looking, and there were other boats that had been ransacked.”

The Garland Co. Sheriff’s Office confirmed two police reports had been filed, and investigators started checking into the incidents Monday. The office couldn’t comment on specifics but offered tips for boaters to keep their property safe.

  • Make sure the boat is secured with good lines.
  • Lock the boat’s doors.
  • Remove valuables from the boat.
  • Check the boat every so often.

Russell said boaters in the area are on high alert.

“We’re offering a reward for the arrest and conviction of the person or persons involved,” Russell said.