Weld County Sheriff's Office

Authorities in Weld County, Co. say an ex-wife who was angry about not getting alimony payments tipped them off to a stolen car ring and chop-shop.

According to a post on the Weld County Sheriff's Office Facebook page, 29-year-old Kevin Albert Chavez of Denver was arrested on Wednesday on suspicion of 22 felonies, including eleven counts of aggravated motor vehicle theft, seven counts of chop-shop activity, four counts of theft and one count of eluding.

The post says the investigation began on Jan. 30, when the sheriff's office was contacted by Chavez's ex-wife, who was angry about not being awarded any alimony payments in her and Chavez's recent divorce. The ex-wife said that while he earned a six-figure income from criminal activity, he had no verifiable income that the court could use to order alimony payments.

That led her to call the sheriff's office and tell them about a number of stolen pickups, ATVs, trailers and utility task vehicles. Members of the office's Criminal Impact Unit acted immediately on her information, recovering over $200,000 worth of vehicles reported stolen in Wyoming, New Mexico, Colorado, and South Dakota.

According to the post, on Feb.10 deputies encountered Chavez near Fort Lupton on Feb.10, driving a stolen vehicle. But he got away as his pursuers decided not to start a high-speed chase because of safety concerns.

Last week investigators recovered over $100,000 worth of stolen vehicles, including two pickups and three ATVs. Weapons were also recovered with the vehicles. Chavez was finally arrested on Wednesday. But the investigation is continuing as authorities continue to try to track down other members of the crime ring.

Anyone with information on the case is being asked to call the Weld County Sheriff's Office at (970) 304-6464.

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