During the months of February and March 2023, the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office observed a substantial increase in vehicle burglaries, with 158 being reported within the noted time frame.
Most of these burglaries resulted from groups of suspects, working together, to steal items from within UNLOCKED VEHICLES. Items such as cash/change, handbags, credit/debit cards, firearms, and other personal belongings were routinely stolen.
In response to the burglaries, detectives worked closely with Crime Analysis personnel to immediately begin identifying and tracking patterns, noting specific geographical areas, and targeting methods and time frames of said crimes.
Detectives initiated a proactive operational plan and used several investigative techniques to solve these cases. As a result, detectives identified and arrested eight individuals, who combined, are facing a total of more than 150 criminal charges, including Grand Theft Auto and Burglary of a Conveyance. Many of the crimes were committed while the suspect(s) were armed.
The individuals arrested are as follows:
– Bailey, Joe Jr. DOB/06-20-2005
– Gilmore, Furious DOB/12-11-2006
– Williams, Larry DOB/10-05-2003
– Powell, Quantez DOB/12-11-2003
– Ford, Jashon DOB/10-15-2003
– Jackson, Jhaquay DOB/10-10-2006
– Green, Sanjay DOB/03-11-2009
– Hardrick, Leon DOB/06-14-2005.
Most of the suspects did not live in Hernando County and traveled to the area only to commit crimes.
Additionally, HCSO detectives worked with detectives from several nearby agencies and determined that some of the listed suspects were also involved in criminal activity in other jurisdictions. Due to this professional teamwork, several cases were solved/closed in other counties/jurisdictions.
In addition to miscellaneous property, detectives recovered and returned numerous stolen items, stolen firearms, and stolen vehicles, to the rightful owners. One particular arrest resulted in the recovery of a firearm that had been reported stolen in St. Petersburg in November of 2022.
The investigation continues.
Detectives want to remind citizens to not only LOCK THEIR VEHICLE(S), but to remove all valuables, including firearms, before doing so.