Theft charge in stolen firewood

A 50-year-old Neilton man is charged with first-degree theft for cutting trees on U.S. Forest Service land over a period of years, totalling more than $15,000 in stolen timber.

Wallace L. Halton pleaded not guilty Monday in Grays Harbor Superior Court. Deputies came across his trailer behind a mill where they were investigating a burglary complaint Feb. 21, 2011. They found a well-used trail leading into the woods behind the trailer, and Halton acknowledged he had been cutting cedar trees to sell for fire wood, according to court documents.

The stolen wood was valued at about $15,000, court documents stated.

A warrant has been issued for Michael McBroom, who is accused of helping in the sale of the stolen wood, but he has not been arrested.