Two Klamath County Sheriff’s deputies were honored Wednesday by the U. S. Forest Service for helping break a multi-state case involving dozens of alleged crimes.

Forest Service Patrol Capt. Dan Smith handed certificates and challenge coins to Deputy Brian Bryson and Cpl. Daren Krag at a ceremony inside the sheriff’s office.

The award stems from a case in which 29 government vehicles were broken into throughout Nevada, California and Oregon. Credit cards and personal items were stolen.

When information about the case was passed around law enforcement agencies in Klamath and Lake counties, Deputy Brian Bryson recognized the methods used. He called Smith to say he had a good idea of the suspect’s identities.

“There was dead silence for a bit,” Smith said of the phone call. At the time, the Forest Service had no suspects in the case.

Area police were instructed to be on the lookout for the man and woman Bryson named. It was not long before Redmond Police arrested them.

Bryson and Krag were ready to go on snowmobile patrol when they received the call from Redmond. With their snowmobiles in tow, the two immediately went to Redmond to interview the suspects. They gained a confession, helped get a search warrant and solved the crime.

“It was good, old fashioned police work,” Smith said. The suspects are now in custody in Deschutes and Lake counties.

To thank the two deputies, Smith presented the two with an official certificate of recognition from the Forest Service and Pacific Northwest division challenge coins. Challenge coins are a military tradition meant to show membership to a group. A challenger presents their coin to force other members to show theirs.

For Smith, the case was another success in close relationships between law enforcement agencies in the region.

“We couldn’t do our job without them,” he said of the Klamath County Sheriff’s Office.

@HandNMartinez