3 suspects in custody after slew of car thefts in Orlando
ORLANDO, Fla (WOFL FOX 35) -
A handful of guests at the Country Inn and Suites found their car windows broken out; shattered glass everywhere with empty center consoles and glove boxes. A group of guys from New Jersey arrived early Thursday morning for check-in, surprised with the greeting they got. “When we pulled in there was one police car here and we could see that glass was all over the ground. It kind of looked really chaotic,” said Jordan Palmiere.
Orlando Police say 10 cars were broken into early Thursday morning. That brings the total up 50 in the same parking lot since Sunday. The good news is that police now have three suspects in custody.
“One of our officers was in an unmarked car and saw a vehicle that was speeding off and it was a little suspicious at that time in the morning so he went over and conducted a traffic stop,” said Sgt. Wanda Ford. When the officer pulled them over, investigators say the suspects were covered in evidence. “When the officer asked him to get out of the vehicle he had glass on his lap. There were three people in the car and all of them had glass on them,” said Ford. “We had another officer check at the hotel and 10 vehicles were just burglarized.”
In the last month there have been dozens of car break-ins in popular tourist areas across central Florida including a dozen "smash-n-grabs" in a hotel parking lot in Melbourne right next to I-95 and 60 cars with windows busted in at hotels near Orlando International Airport.
Early Thursday morning Orlando police arrested 18 year olds Raymond Rhodes and Craig Blunt, Jr, and their 17 year old friend Quinton Montgomery. Orlando Police say that another car sped out of the same parking lot at the same time as the three were arrested.
At this point it is unclear if the driver of that car had anything to do with the incident from earlier in the morning. According to the arrest affidavit, at least two of the suspects are cooperating. Orlando Police say it’s still too early to tell if the trio they arrested could be responsible for all of the recent crime.