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PCSO News Release

Media Contact:
Wood, Donna

Public Information Officer 
News Date: 8/1/2014 

 Polk County Sheriff’s Office Organized Retail Crime Unit Arrests Winter Haven Couple – Car Filled with Stolen Merchandise 

On Thursday, July 31, 2014, Polk County Sheriff’s Office Organized Retail Crime Unit detectives received information about two subjects taking property from the Publix Super Markets, located at 4730 S. Florida Avenue, Lakeland.

The subjects, 32-year-old Dalma Serrano, DOB 05/18/1982, 2120 Kings Crossing Street SW, Winter Haven, and 43-year-old Marcus White, 05/26/1971, 3420 Avenue T, NW, Winter Haven, were being detained by store loss prevention personnel after attempting to leave the store with merchandise they had not paid for and that they had attempted to conceal.

A silver, 2000, Pontiac Grand Am, was located at the nearby Starbuck’s parking lot.  Inside, in plain view on the backseat were new clothing items with tags and large amounts of household merchandise.  Serrano told detectives the Grand Am was her vehicle and gave detectives consent to search inside. 

Inside the car, PCSO detectives located 24 new children’s outfits, six pairs of men’s shorts, nine polo shirts, one pair each of shorts and pants, 13 bags of Tide Pods detergent, six bags of Gain Flings detergent, 11 bottles of Dawn Dish Soap, and four cans of Febreeze spray. An estimated $1,000 worth of merchandise was recovered from inside the car.

Post Miranda, Serrano admitted to stealing the recovered merchandise from the K-Mart store located at 4717 S. Florida Avenue, and the Dollar General Store located at 3111 U.S. Highway 98 S. Lakeland, Florida.

“They didn’t ride back home in their car full of stolen merchandise – they rode to jail in the back of our patrol car,” said Sheriff Grady Judd.  “Retail theft is not going to be overlooked in Polk County.  Shoplifters think they can make a living stealing from local retailers, while other consumers must pay for the rising cost for goods as a result of their crimes.  But just like these two suspects, if we catch you stealing from a local store, we are going to arrest you and do everything we can to let people know you are a thief.” 

Serrano has been in the Polk County Jail four previous times, most recently in March 2014 on charges of Failure to Appear.

White stated he knew Serrano was stealing merchandise from Kmart, Dollar General Store, and the Winn Dixie Store located off Edgewood Drive in Lakeland, but that he was not involved.

White was released from Florida State Prison on June 17, 2014, after being incarcerated for Grand Theft, and Petit Theft – 3rd conviction.  White has been in the Polk County Jail 29 times and has been in Prison 3 times.  Among the arrests in the state of Florida, White has a total of: 36 Felony charges, 49 Misdemeanor charges, 13 Unknown level charges, and 4 Failure to appear charges.

During the investigation, security video was obtained from the K-Mart store which captured both Serrano and White concealing clothing merchandise while inside the business.   The video showed the couple exiting the store without purchasing the items.

Both were charged with Retail Theft Multiple Locations within 48 hour period.  Both were booked in the Polk County jail on no bond.

The investigation is ongoing.