3 teens charged with stealing guns during school hours

When his neighbor got robbed, police officers say a Groveland man saw something, said something, and helped them bust three suspected gun thieves.

“I try to watch out when my friends go away, I try to watch their homes for them, and I'm sure they'd do the same for me,” said Robert Ciccotelli.

Ciccotelli says he looked out his window to see three teenagers bolting from his neighbor’s home to their getaway car.

“I see these two guys come out from behind the house with armloads of stuff. They get in either side of the car,” Ciccotelli said.

Police say they teens had just stolen four guns, including an assault rifle, and jewelry. Ciccotelli says when they sped off, so did he.

“I just put the car in gear and go off after them,” Ciccotelli said. “They rabbited, I couldn't catch them, it was just too fast. I was trying to get a license plate number at least, but I couldn't do it.”

He says, though, he did manage to call the cops and describe the car, which cops later found at nearby South Lake High School. 

“They got the parking lot number, went in, and made contact with the school resource deputies at South Lake High School, and together they called the students down,” said Sgt. Stephanie Crews, from Groveland Police.

Police say they arrested the teenagers, two boys and  girl, ages 15, 16 and 17, and they found the loot stashed in an abandoned shack.

Police say they're happy the guns are off the streets. The teens were booked as juveniles into the lake county jail. They face felony charges including armed robbery and grand theft.