ARIZONA — A former Arizona congressman has been charged with arranging weddings and stealing gifts from multiple wedding venues, police say.
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Landon Earl Rankin, 54, was arrested May 4 for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from couples on their wedding day, according to a news release from the Chandler Police Department.
According to the police, two of the incidents occurred a fortnight apart. One on April 15, when they say Rankin attended a wedding reception, dressed up as a guest, and stole the wedding card box with about $3,000 to $5,000 inside. Another similar incident occurred on April 30. Chandler Police said it was linked to a total of eleven incidents reported so far in the East Valley.
KPNX says Rankin was arrested by investigators and allegedly admitted to interrupting some wedding ceremonies, saying it was because he wanted to listen to couples exchanging vows. When arresting Rankin, officers apparently found some of the stolen checks. He was also in possession of methamphetamine and fentanyl, according to Chandler police.
During the investigation, police learned that Rankin was a former investigator with the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO). KPNX says that according to his LinkedIn page, he worked for PCSO for more than 20 years before retiring in 2015.
KNXV says Rankin’s arrest on Wednesday was related to wedding gift thefts, and investigators learned he was apparently charged in a similar case in the Pinal County area. If you believe you are a victim or have information about these cases, investigators ask that you call them at 480-782-4130.
Rankin was convicted on two counts of third-degree burglary, possession of dangerous drugs, possession of a narcotic and possession of paraphernalia.
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