"If you see something, say something - that's what we tell people every day. Two different neighbors of a victim on Sutton Road saw and heard something, and said something - and thanks to them, two prolific offenders are back in jail where they belong." - Grady Judd, Sheriff
On Wednesday, December 14, 2016, PCSO Deputies and LPD Officer apprehended 18-year-old James Davis and 21-year-old Antonio Thomas minutes after they kicked in the door of a home on Sutton Road and then fled when a neighbor yelled at them and called 9-1-1.
The following are excerpts from their affidavits, and are self-explanatory:
On December 14, 2016 at approximately 11:20 a.m., a witness who resides on Sutton Road in Lakeland, Florida, received a phone call from a neighbor stating he heard a loud bang. The witness looked out the window and observed a maroon 4 door Pontiac backed in the driveway of another house on Sutton Road in Lakeland, with two (2) black males going in and out of the residence with item(s). The witness yelled out to them making his presence known at which time the two (2) black male suspect(s) got back into the vehicle and fled southbound on Sutton Road. Numerous deputies, K-9 and the PCSO helicopter responded to the area. A BOLO was put out on the suspect vehicle for the responding deputies.
K-9 Deputy Christopher Dudley was traveling in the area of 10th Street / Webster Avenue and observed a vehicle matching the above description with two (2) black male suspect(s) inside. K-9 Deputy Dudley turned his patrol vehicle around and attempt to catch up to the vehicle, which made a right on Webster Avenue, and another right on 9th Street. The vehicle turned left on Parkhurst Avenue where the two (2) black male occupants, later identified as Antonio Thomas (Driver) and James Davis (Passenger), exited the vehicle and ran westbound towards Kathleen Road. Deputy Dudley observed the black male exiting the passenger side and notified responding units. A perimeter was established and was later learned that Antonio Thomas and James Davis unlawfully went into the residence on 8th Street within the city of Lakeland, Florida, until the homeowner chased them out with a metal pipe (this is an ongoing LPD investigation). Antonio Thomas and James Davis were ultimately located by LPD Officers, hiding inside an unlocked vehicle located on 8th Street, Lakeland, Florida, and positively identified by the witness as the suspects seen going into the neighbor's home on Sutton Road.
The vehicle was identified as a 2006 Maroon Pontiac Grand Am containing the following stolen items/Christmas presents stolen from the residence on Sutton Road in Lakeland:
-Red Santa Claus pajamas
-Pack of black crew socks
-Playschool hero (Hulk)
-DC Super hero Batgirl
-Superman Spinner toy
-5 Minute marvel Storybook
At the scene, sets of shoe impressions were observed on the tile floor which resemble the shoes worn by both James Davis and Antonio Thomas. These shoes were seized and turned into evidence.
Based on the investigation, James Davis and Antonio Thomas unlawfully entered into the above residence and removed numerous items of jewelry and children's Christmas presents subsequently depriving the rightful owner of their property ($350). After fleeing the scene, James Davis and Antonio Thomas observed Deputy Sheriff Dudley who was operating his marked patrol vehicle. As Deputy Dudley was attempting to catch up they fled from the vehicle and location subsequently resisting the efforts of the deputy to conduct a lawful investigation. It should be noted that the stolen item(s) were wrapped up in Christmas wrapping paper and were unwrapped after the theft.
The above suspect(s) were arrested on the above noted offenses and transported to the Polk County Jail.
James Davis (DOB 4/6/98) has been charged with Trespassing, Burglary, Grand Theft, and Resisting arrest. He has been arrested 10 times in Polk County, by PCSO and LPD, for charges such as Armed Robbery, Domestic Violence, Resisting Arrest, Narcotics charges, Burglary, and Violation of Probation. His most recent arrest was on September 27, 2016, for Grand Theft, and Burglary.
Antonio Thomas (DOB 6/8/95) has been charged with Trespassing, Burglary, Grand Theft, Resisting Arrest, and Violation of Probation for previous Burglary and Grand Theft charges. He has been arrested three times in Polk County, and was sent to state prison in 2013 for two years, for Grand Theft and Burglary, and was just released on November 4, 2016, where he was placed on felony probation. His latest arrest violated that probation.
"Thanks to these observant neighbors, and the teamwork between PCSO and LPD, these two suspects are back in jail, and the presents that the victim bought for her grandchildren were recovered. It's a Merry Christmas all around." - Grady Judd, Sheriff