Okeechobee hit with rash of car burglaries

OKEECHOBEE – Six vehicle burglaries were reported in Okeechobee County last week, beginning on April 10 when two firearms were stolen from a truck on Northwest Sixth Street. In that case, the vehicle was locked, and the perpetrator broke a window to get to the weapons.

On April 16, three vehicles were broken into — one on Southwest 86th Way; one on Northwest 10th Terrace and one on Southwest Ninth Street. Two of the three vehicles were left unlocked, but the third was not.

Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Deputy Jose Garcia was dispatched to the home on Southwest Ninth Street at approximately 6 p.m., and when he arrived, he spoke with the complainant, who told him when she got in her car and closed the door, her glove compartment came open. She said she never goes in the glove compartment, so this made her suspicious and she began checking to see if anything was missing. She realized her food stamp card, air pods, a Michael Kors wallet, a Coach purse and $20 were missing. There were no security cameras and neighbors said they did not hear or see anything.

On April 17, Deputy Marc Williams was dispatched to Southeast 37th Way at approximately 6 p.m. The complainant said he went to the Shell gas station on U.S. 441 Southeast at about 10 a.m. to buy some milk. While he was inside, someone opened his unlocked door and took a pair of Airpods which had been located on the front seat. He did not realize they were missing until a few hours later at which time he began pinging for a location. The Airpods were pinging at an address on Southeast 37th Way, but Deputy Williams was unable to make contact with anyone at the location. Deputy Williams attempted to get video footage for that time period at the Shell station, but was told the manager was in the hospital and no one else could access it. He left a message for the manager to contact him as soon as possible. Dusting for fingerprints on the passenger door handle turned up no latent prints.

On April 18, Deputy Quinton Speed was dispatched to a home on Southeast 60th Drive in reference to a stolen pistol and radar detector. The complainant said he placed his Glock pistol in the console the night before, but the following day while driving, he realized his radar detector was no longer on the dash. He then checked to see if the gun was still there and found it was gone. He returned home to see if anyone else had taken the items out of the vehicle, but that was not the case. He does not remember if the vehicle was locked, but no tool marks were observed on the doors of the vehicle and no damage was done. No latent fingerprints were recovered from the console.

All cases are still under investigation.

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