Thefts, violence dominate Lakeland crime report

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) handled the following incidents in Lakeland during the first half of September. See next week’s issue for the remainder of September’s incidents.

Editor’s note: All suspects are presumed to be innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, and values are estimated for stolen/damaged items. These are brief summaries of detailed SCSO reports.

Top 8 offenses in Lakeland, September 2015


Sept. 2

Canada Road (felony shoplifting)

A suspect jumped over the pharmacy counter at Walgreens (2960 Canada Road) on Sept. 2 and stole prescription medication, the shift manager reported.

Three employees witnessed the theft while a second suspect stood at the counter and said to grab everything. They left through the front door. The second suspect had his hands raised and said, “I’m not in this.” The suspects didn’t use force and did not display or imply they had weapons.

Two witnesses in the parking lot described the getaway vehicle as a gray or light blue Saturn sedan with a damaged rear bumper and silver molding down the side. The vehicle headed north on Canada Road toward Interstate 40.

Sept. 4

East Fir Hill Road (other theft/non-specific)

A city board candidate reported stolen campaign signs ($3.25 each) on Sept. 4. He said two witnesses saw the signs inside another person’s garage on the 4000 block of East Fir Hill.

The responding officers observed the signs inside the open garage at the suspect’s home and contacted the suspect, who said he took the four signs from the entrance at Canada Road and William Little.

The sign removals occurred between Aug. 29 and Sept. 4. The suspect received a citation for theft of property under $500.

Old Brownsville Road (simple assault/ domestic violence)

A woman reported being in a domestic fight with her child’s father on the 9100 block of Old Brownsville Road on Sept. 4.

They argued over childcare expenses around 3 p.m. at his mother’s home, where he lives. He got very angry, yelled, ran up to her and pushed her with his body, she said. So she and her child left. She had no injuries.

Sept. 6

Canada Road (intimidation/domestic violence)

A Canada Road woman reported on Sept. 6 that her estranged husband threatened her from 2009 through March 2015. The couple separated in March 2014 and she moved to Florida. In one call, he reportedly told her, “I am the one to decide if you live or die.”

She learned that he had a gun at home, and she was concerned enough to drive back to Shelby County to make a report so she can establish a case for an order of protection.

She mentioned that she had a mental evaluation at the Veterans Administra-tion hospital on Sept. 4.

She also alleged that her husband is “fooling around” with the young boys he hires to work at his house, just as she suspected he had been inappropriate with her 22-year-old son when he was 14.

Sept. 7

Canada Road (other theft/non-specific)

The owner of the Exxon at 3548 Canada Road reported on Sept. 7 that a customer failed to pay for six gallons of gas. He said the white female parked her Suburban at a pump, bought motor oil with cash, used the oil and then began pumping gas.

He said she left when she realized the funds did not transfer for her debit card.

Sept. 8

Barley Mills Circle (false pretenses/swindle/ confidence game)

In a phone scam that has been circulating in Shelby County, a woman reported receiving a fake law enforcement call demanding money on Sept. 8.

The caller claimed to be Lt. Michael Ellis with the Shelby County Warrant Division, and he said she had pending warrants for failure to appear for jury duty. He said she would go to jail unless she obtained a Green Dot card (prepaid credit card) to keep the warrants from becoming active.

She told him she would not comply, and he threatened to issue warrants for her arrest as soon as he ended the call.

Sept. 9

Quebec Lane (simple assault/domestic violence)

A mother who lives on the 9800 block of Quebec Lane reported that her son got violent on Sept. 9 when she refused to let him take her car. She was vacuuming the living room, and he kicked the vacuum out of her hands twice. She said he has paranoid schizophrenia and does this type of thing regularly.

She left the room to let him calm down, but he followed her and slapped her face about three times. She went to the neighbor’s house across the street and called law enforcement. While she was waiting, her son started the chainsaw and asked, “Are the police coming?”

He was back inside by the time officers arrived. They spoke with him and determined that he didn’t seem to be thinking clearly. He asked officers, “Are you ready?” as if he were going to fight them. He admitted being mad at his mother because she wouldn’t let him take her car so he could go get high and calm down. He said he had taken his medication shot this month but was due for another next week.

The mother also noticed that her son had destroyed her iPhone, possibly by slamming it on the ground while she was outside. Officers took the son to the Memphis Mental Health Institute (MMHI) for emergency detention.

Sept. 10

Canada Road (theft from motor vehicle)

A woman reported that someone stole her purse from her unlocked car while it was parked at ATC Fitness (2991 Canada Road) between about 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. Sept. 10. Her Patricia Nash purse contained her driver’s license, Social Security card and savings account book. She had no suspect information, and the crime scene was not workable.

Sept. 11

Webber Drive (theft from motor vehicle)

A man said he heard a loud noise outside just after midnight on Sept. 11 and found that someone had smashed his pickup’s driver’s side window. Items stolen included an architectural laser in a gray case ($300), a yellow/orange chainsaw ($1,200) and two black drills in a red case ($300).

He didn’t have any suspect information but said a black four-door sedan left from in front of his house when he went outside.

Back Nine Drive (theft of vehicle parts/ accessories)

A woman reported that someone removed a headlight lens cap from her Chevy Tahoe, parked at the Somerset Apartments on the 9300 block of Back Nine Drive. The theft occurred between 8 p.m. Sept. 10 and 8 a.m. Sept. 11. No one entered the vehicle, and there was no other apparent damage.

Kingsridge Drive (misdemeanor vandalism)

A resident on the 9700 block of Kingsridge Drive found on Sept. 11 that someone had vandalized his Volkswagen Jetta overnight. A sharp object punched a hole in the glass of the front driver’s side window, but window tint adhesive prevented the rest of the window from shattering. The damage occurred between 10:20 p.m. Sept. 10 and 4 a.m. Sept. 11.

Sept. 12

Sea Ray Lane (theft from motor vehicle)

Someone broke a window on a woman’s Chevrolet Silverado and stole her Bass Pro camo purse and purple Coach wallet early on Sept. 12.

The woman, a resident on the 3200 block of Sea Ray Lane, said it happened between 12:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. The responding officer saw the broken glass and pry marks on the vehicle’s window frame.

Hadley Drive (residential burglary)

A man returned to his home on the 4000 block of Hadley Drive, saw an open rear window and found that someone had stolen cash, a necklace, a Raymond Weil watch and a Citizen watch.

The crime happened between 4:45 p.m. and about 10 p.m. Sept. 12.

Sept. 13

Maple Run Drive (theft from building)

On Sept. 13, a woman on the 10200 block of Maple Run Drive reported a ring missing from her home after having guests there on Sept. 1.

Sept. 14

Champions Drive (residential burglary)

A resident on the 3000 block of Champions Drive reported that someone burglarized her apartment between 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 14. Items stolen included a Vizio TV and miscellaneous jewelry.

Winward Slope Drive (other theft/non-specific)

A woman on the 9800 block of Winward Slope Drive reported that someone stole a window screen from the front of her house between Sept. 12 and Sept. 14. She believes it was an attempted burglary.

U.S. 64/Garden Woods Drive (felony weapon law violations)

A deputy pulled over a driver with very dark window tint at 1:46 p.m. Sept. 16 at U.S. 64 and Garden Woods. He also saw there was no light illuminating the license plate.

Even with his spotlight, the deputy was not able to clearly see the car’s five occupants. He smelled marijuana at the vehicle and got identification from the driver and the names of the other occupants.

The front passenger had an active warrant for failure to pay county fines, and the officer arrested him. A search of the man yielded 18 small baggies labeled “4:20,” an electronic scale, $26.75 in cash and a long green cylinder full of marijuana in small baggies. The suspect also said he had a weapon under the seat.

Deputies detained the remaining occupants for officer safety, and one found a black Ruger SR22 handgun under the seat with a live round in the chamber. The front passenger then said the weapon and marijuana were his and his alone. He refused to answer any further questions after being advised of his Miranda rights.

The driver got a courtesy citation for improper display of vehicle registration and was released along with the other occupants. The front passenger was charged with possession of a firearm in commission of a felony, possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, and possession of drug paraphernalia.