Farming equipment destroyed

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Ross Evans said he knows exactly where he parked his John Deere 7520 tractor Friday -- and it definitely wasn't on top of his plow.

But when the farmer went to his field Sunday, he found his tractor parked on top of the plow with a punctured fuel tank, and several pieces of equipment ruined by vandals.

"When I saw that I thought, 'My God, somebody swiped a back wheel,' because I couldn't see it was parked on top of the plow," Evans said. "It looks to me like a hundred thousand dollars in damage."

Evans said when he finished working his field south of Craig on Friday afternoon, he parked his John Deere in a low spot out of sight of the passing road.

But sometime between Friday and Sunday, someone took the tractor for a ride and left it on top of Evans' plow.

Although the gates were locked, someone crossed Evans' field, started his tractor and proceeded to drive over all the equipment at the site, he said.

Evans said his losses include field cultivators, discs, harrows, and a punctured tank on the tractor that leaked 75 gallons of diesel fuel onto the ground.

Evans said he will not be able to determine the damage to the tractor until he can get a loader to lift it off the plow it was left straddling.

The Evans Co. works more than a thousand acres near Craig, and the tractor was on 240 acres near Thompson Hill off Moffat County Road 177. Evans said he had just taken the tractor out to the location a week earlier and finished the harrow work on Friday.

Sgt. K.C. Hume of the Moffat County Sheriff's Office said he is investigating the case.

Evans said he is hoping to save this year's planting by finding equipment at local auctions.

"We still have the planting to do, and we don't have any equipment to do it with now," Evans said. "Even that fuel we lost was a good expense."

Evans' great-grandfather farmed here in the valley, and Evans' wife, Audine, is having a hard time understanding the weekend's destruction.

"How can you consider this to be fun?" Audine Evans asked. "It's just devastating."

Dan Olsen can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 207, or dolsen@craigdailypress.com.

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