Rutherfordton - After a month-long investigation into possible odometer tampering, agents with the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles' License and Theft Bureau, along with authorities with the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office, the Forest City Police and Spindale Police, arrested Mitchel Craig Padgett, 20, at his home in Forest City on Monday, Jan. 11.
Padgett was charged with six felony counts of Unlawful Change of Mileage, seven felony counts of Altering a Certificate of Title, eight felony counts of Common Law Forgery and seven felony counts of Aiding and Abetting Notary Fraud. He was taken to the Rutherford County Jail and held under a $140,000 secured bond.
License and Theft Inspector Aaron Ellenburg led the investigation. In addition, a search warrant was executed at Padgett's residence and at AACE Automotive, a vehicle repair garage that he owned and operated at 667 US 221-A in Forest City, by License and Theft Lt. James Walston and inspectors Aaron Carver and Charity Brown.
License and Theft agents are continuing to investigate the possibility of additional victims.