Trucker found, beef delivered


HARTFORD, Conn. (AP)- A truck driver who had been reported missing, along with a large load of frozen beef, has been arrested on a theft charge.

Ralph Pritchett, 49, of Manchester was arrested Tuesday after his employer, an Indiana freight company, reported it had not been able to reach him after he failed to deliver the $500,000 worth of beef.

Pritchett was arrested in the city’s North End, Sgt. Martin Miller said. No other details of the arrest were available Thursday morning.

The meat eventually was delivered to the Suffield company expecting it, WVIT-TV reported.

After the driver failed to make a delivery at 1 a.m. Monday in Suffield, the company, Priority Refrigerated Service of Chesterton, Ind., reported the incident to police.

The company said it left 20 messages for the driver within 24 hours, but he failed to return any of them, the company official told police Tuesday.

Pritchett was charged with first-degree larceny and was being held on $50,000 for a court appearance.

Information from: The Hartford Courant,

AP-ES-04-27-06 0620EDT