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PCSO News Release

Media Contact:
Eleazer, Carrie

Public Information Officer 
News Date: 10/20/2016 

 PCSO Deputies Interrupt Crime Spree, Arrest Four in Lakeland 


During the evening hours of Tuesday, October 18, 2016, leading into Wednesday morning, October 19th, a crime spree occurred in the Shepherd Oaks subdivision, Imperial Lakes subdivision, and Casa Loma subdivision, all in the south Lakeland/Mulberry area. 

PCSO deputies arrested four suspects, three males and a female, ranging in age from 16 years old to 19 years old and charged them with several crimes after interrupting their crime spree, during which they stole five vehicles and two firearms, and burglarized unsecured homes and cars.

"The most important message about this crime spree is this: if you LOCK YOUR CARS and secure your belongings, you are almost guaranteeing that you will not be a victim of theft. Every vehicle stolen during this crime spree was unlocked, with the keys inside of it - the only exception are the two cars whose keys were taken from inside a home where the garage door was up. When you get home, the first thing you need to do is lock your car - and the second thing you need to do is shut your garage door and lock all your other doors. We're glad we caught these suspects before they victimized anyone else." - Grady Judd, Sheriff

The first car theft was reported on Peninsular Drive in Christina on Wednesday morning, October 19th. The victims left their garage door up, and while they were home but unknown to them, suspects went into the house and removed car keys, a wallet, and a camera from a counter inside the home near where the garage leads into the house. The suspects stole the victims' 2003 Chevrolet Avalanche (1) and 2004 Buick LeSabre (2).

During a neighborhood canvass, deputies discovered two burglaries of unlocked cars on Hayter Drive and two attempted car burglaries of locked cars on Sunset Ridge.

Shortly thereafter, a Chrysler 200 (3) was reported stolen from Shepherd Oaks Road, along with a trailer theft and another car burglary. 

Two more stolen vehicles, a 2013 Chevrolet Cruze (4) and a 2011 Dodge Caliber (5), were reported in Imperial Lakes. 

A car burglary was reported on Loma Verde, during which a .38 special Ruger revolver was stolen from an unlocked car. Another burglary was reported on Casa Loma Way, during which a Bond 410 "Snake Slayer" handgun was stolen from an unlocked car.  

Deputies utilized surveillance video from homeowners and nearby businesses, along with OnStar-style vehicle tracking software during the investigation. During the investigation, deputies went to the area of Market Square off of Pipkin Road, where they located four of the stolen vehicles - the Chevy Avalanche, the Buick LeSabre, the Chrysler 200, and the Dodge Caliber, but not the stolen trailer or the Chevy Cruze - parked alongside the road.

Two of the suspects, Jacob Cleveland and Dante Scott, were found nearby inside the stolen Chevy Cruze. Cleveland had active Polk County warrants for grand theft auto, fraud, theft, and criminal mischief. The suspects were interviewed, and two other suspects were identified: Jarred Clark and Angel Wheaton. Deputies responded to Hayes Road in Lakeland, and although they both hid inside the house (Clark hid in the attic but surrendered after gas was introduced), deputies were able to take them both into custody without incident.

The suspects and their charges are:

17-year-old Jacob Cleveland, DOB 3/3/1999, of Melissa Lane in Lakeland; 17 counts Armed Burglary; 5 counts Grand Theft of Motor Vehicle; 2 counts Grand Theft of Firearm; 4 counts Grand Theft; 3 counts Petit Theft; one count Conspiracy to Commit Burglary; 

19-year-old Donte Scott, DOB 9/12/1997, of Zella Lane in Lakeland; 17 counts Armed Burglary; 5 counts Grand Theft of Motor Vehicle; 2 counts Grand Theft of Firearm; 4 counts Grand Theft; 3 counts Petit Theft; one count Conspiracy to Commit Burglary; one count Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor; he's been in the Polk County Jail on five prior occasions.

17-year-old Jarred Clark, DOB 10/21/1999, of Hayes Rd in Lakeland; 17 counts Armed Burglary; 5 counts Grand Theft of Motor Vehicle; 2 counts Grand Theft of Firearm; 4 counts Grand Theft; 3 counts Petit Theft; one count Conspiracy to Commit Burglary;

17-year-old Angel Wheaton (female), DOB 6/24/1999, of Hayes Rd in Lakeland; 17 counts Armed Burglary; 5 counts Grand Theft of Motor Vehicle; 2 counts Grand Theft of Firearm; 4 counts Grand Theft; 3 counts Petit Theft; one count Conspiracy to Commit Burglary; 

Each of the stolen vehicles, with the exception of the two on Peninsular Drive (their keys were taken from inside an unsecured residence) were unlocked; each of the vehicles that were broken into and had items stolen from within, were unlocked; the suspects attempted to break into other vehicles that were locked, but were unable. Ten cases were cleared by these four arrests. The investigation is ongoing.