SCSO handles April crimes in Lakeland


The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) handled the following incidents in Lakeland during April.

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.

April 4

Canada Road (misdemeanor vandalism)

Someone drove ruts in the grassy common area at 2991 Canada Road between March 31 and April 4, according to the property manager.

An unknown witness told the property manager that drivers of a Ford F150 and a Jeep did the damage. It was dark, so the witness couldn’t get a good view of the suspects.

The property manager didn’t have an estimate for damage repair costs at the time of the report.

Bent Crest Cove (non-residential burglary)

During April 1-3, someone took a utility trailer from a man’s yard on the 3300 block of Bent Crest Cove. The incident was reported on April 4.

The owner said someone took the trailer from his side yard, along with other property from his detached garage. The man said he was home all weekend but didn’t hear or see anything suspicious.

Items taken from the garage included a Stihl weed trimmer, Stihl blower and Stihl chainsaw, and the date of their theft is uncertain because the owner said he hasn’t been in his garage all winter.

He said there has been unusual activity in his neighborhood over the past couple of months, and the homeowners’ association has video footage of a suspicious person looking into homes and garages. The owner’s house has been on the market for six months with a sign in the yard, which he said might have alerted thieves to target him.

The trailer’s information was added to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database.

Country Bridge Road (residential burglary)

A man discovered that his Glock pistol and a bag of change were missing from his bedroom on April 4. The last time he saw the pistol was March 15.

He named as a possible suspect a DirecTV installer who worked at the home 8-11 a.m. March 24.

The pistol’s information was entered into the NCIC database.

April 6

Birchton Glade Cove (other larceny/access device)

Someone made fraudulent charges to a man’s debit card during April 3-6, the victim reported on April 6.

The man said the last time he used his Bank of America debit card was at Pizza Hut on Airline Road, near U.S. 70.

The disputed charges included a $70 nail salon charge, as well as check card charges totaling $349.67.

The nail salon owner provided the name of a female customer who had her nails done, with the fee paid in advance by phone, using the victim’s debit card information. The man said he had possession of the card at the time.

April 7

Carly Drive (theft of vehicle parts/accessories)

A man on the 10100 block of Carly Drive reported April 7 that his Tennessee license plate had been stolen sometime that afternoon. He left home around noon to run errands in the Shelby County area and didn’t notice his tag was missing until he returned home at 3 p.m.

He couldn’t provide any suspect information or a specific location where the tag was stolen. The tag’s information was entered into the NCIC database.

April 11

Breckenridge Cove (motor vehicle theft of a passenger vehicle)

A man on the 8900 block of Breckenridge Cove reported April 11 that his truck was missing.

He noticed around 9 a.m. that his Ford F150 ($20,000) wasn’t in his driveway where he had left it the previous night. The last time he saw it was around 1:30 a.m. April 11.

All of the truck’s windows and doors were locked, and the vehicle alarm was activated. He said he didn’t have any weapons or other items of importance in the vehicle. The vehicle’s information was placed in the NCIC database.

Maple Glen Court (identity theft)

A call from Verizon Wireless on April 8 alerted a man on the 4600 block of Maple Glen Court that someone had fraudulently gained access to his account. He reported it on April 11.

Verizon advised him that his password had been changed and that calls to his and his wife’s phones were being forwarded to a number with a 619 area code. The victim said that someone must have obtained access to his personal information, including his Social Security Number, to get access to the Verizon account. He did not know how that happened.

The victim also said that a detective with the Fresno, Calif., Police Department called him around March 1 about a female who had been arrested with a book containing the personal information of the victim and his wife. He didn’t know if the incident was related.

April 16

Knob Hill Road (theft from building)

A man reported on April 16 that his daughter stole two of his guitars ($3,300) between April 9 and April 12.

He said she entered with a key and took his Taylor and Gibson guitars from his bedroom. She had been living with him but had moved out April 9 to live with her boyfriend.

He said she texted him, saying, “I will get your guitars back next week but I owed a drug dealer money and he was threatening my life.” He couldn’t locate the text message or his guitars’ serial numbers at the time of the report.

April 17

Woodland Elm Cove (simple assault/domestic violence)

A couple’s argument escalated into threats and a poke to the face the evening of April 17, the woman reported.

She said they were arguing around 8:30 p.m. when he became aggressive, possibly because of intoxication. She said he got in her face, swore and said she would be dead tomorrow. Then he reportedly pushed his index finger into her right cheek and said, “I’ll destroy you. I’ll leave you with nothing.” They continued arguing briefly before he left.

The responding deputies saw no abrasions or bruising to the woman’s face. The man wasn’t on scene when deputies arrived.

April 18

Champions Drive (simple assault/domestic violence)

An argument over alcohol turned into a physical attack, a male victim reported on April 18.

The man said he and his girlfriend of three years were leaving the Ragin’ Cajun Crawfish Fest at 6 p.m. when they argued. She was very drunk and wanted more alcohol, he said, but he was trying to take her back to their home. He and a male friend left together, and a female friend left with the girlfriend.

Both females confronted him about getting more alcohol when the four met back at the couple’s home. When he refused, they hit him in the face and chest, he said. The two guys went to a friend’s house to let the situation calm down.

When they returned about an hour later, the female friend was gone, and the victim saw an unknown man lying on his bed. He asked the stranger why he was there and told him to leave.

Then he confronted his girlfriend about the visitor, and he said she got agitated and began hitting him again. She left when he called law enforcement. He believes her female friend returned and picked her up.

The left side of the victim’s face was very swollen, and his chest was very red and irritated. A deputy took crime scene photos of the injuries. He refused transportation or medical attention on scene.

April 19

U.S. 64 (other larceny/commercial construction)

Someone stole heavy construction/industrial equipment (a battery) from the construction site of a future Krystal restaurant, a man reported on April 19.

The battery was taken between 7 p.m. April 18 and 7 a.m. April 19. Someone also pried plywood off a doorway to peek inside the structure, but nothing inside was disturbed. The complainant said some men quit working for him about a week ago and a lock was removed from a covered trailer around then, but nothing was removed.

The construction site is at 9986 U.S. 64.

Swan Hill Drive (other larceny/access device)

A father on the 4100 block of Swan Hill Drive reported April 19 that his adult son had charged about $3,000 to the father’s credit card without permission. When he asked his son about the most recent charge, the son yelled and blamed his father for his problems.

The father recounted what happened next: He asked if his son wanted to kill him, and the son said he did. Then the son pushed a blender off the kitchen bar toward his father, and the appliance broke on the floor. The son knocked over several other items and then saw his child walk into the room. He told his father, “If I stay here one more minute, I’ll kill you.” Then he left.

The father explained that his son visits the father’s home on the 4100 block of Swan Hill Drive to see his three-year-old daughter, who lives there. The father wasn’t sure of his son’s residence but said he thinks his son lives in a room at the Best Western on U.S. 64.

The father refused to prosecute his son for the credit card larceny but did want to prosecute him for the assault. An officer took pictures of the damage.

April 20

Ultragreen Lane (residential burglary)

A man’s daughter returned to their home on the 3000 block of Ultragreen Lane around 2:40 p.m. April 20 and found it had been burglarized.

Someone entered the house through the unlocked north bedroom window and ransacked the south master bedroom, opening drawers and moving the mattress. The suspect took a gun safe from the master bedroom closet along with 12 weapons that were in the safe or in various locations around the bedroom. Both front and rear exterior doors were left ajar. The total value of stolen items was $9,100.

The victim couldn’t provide serial numbers for any of the weapons at the time of the report.

April 22

Fletcher Trace Parkway (theft from building)

A woman taking pity on a thirsty fundraiser found herself the victim of theft on April 22. She said a woman approached her in her home’s driveway around 8:45 p.m., saying she was raising money for an unspecified cause.

The stranger asked for something to drink, so the woman invited her into the kitchen. The guest then asked for some toilet tissue, so the woman retrieved some from the bathroom, leaving her purse on the kitchen island.

The suspect left in a white GM Savanna van. Later, the woman found that her wallet (containing cash, her Tennessee driver’s license and Social Security card) was missing from the purse.

The suspect was located in the van at Kingsridge/ Stonecrest, but she denied all involvement in the crime. She and four other people in the van said they were selling things door-to-door in the area. They allowed a search of the vehicle, but no contraband or the stolen property was found.

April 23

U.S. 64 and Berryhill Road (felony drugs/narcotics violation)

An officer who tried to stop a tailgating driver ended up making a felony drug arrest on April 23.

The officer was traveling eastbound on U.S. 64 at 1:10 a.m. when he saw a white Pontiac Grand Am headed westbound, following traffic too closely. When the deputy made a U-turn, the car accelerated quickly and aggressively swerved between vehicles as it changed lanes without signaling, causing other drivers to brake and alter their course to avoid a possible crash.

When the deputy stopped the car, he saw it had a Tennessee drive-out tag. He also spotted an open bottle of liquor on the floorboard behind the front passenger seat, and he told the driver to get out. When he patted down the driver, he found a red plastic medicine bottle containing an unknown liquid in the man’s pocket. The prescription label was gone. The driver said the liquid was “lean.”

The deputy retrieved the liquor bottle and saw it was a 750ml bottle of Royale Club Whiskey that was open and about three-quarters empty. Another deputy arrived, took possession of the medicine bottle and had the liquid tested. It was codeine, a scheduled narcotic, and it weighed 61.5 grams in total gram weight (TGW).

The driver couldn’t provide proof of insurance, and he completed a form allowing his vehicle to be towed from the scene. He was taken to the Shelby County Jail and charged with reckless driving, possession of a controlled substance and violations of financial responsibility and the open container law.

April 25

Woodland Bend Drive (felony vandalism)

A man who saw a woman vandalizing one of his cars on April 23 reported the incident on April 25. The man, a resident on the 9800 block of Woodland Bend Drive, said he looked out his home’s front window around 8 p.m. and saw a female acquaintance kneeling and scratching the exterior of his Lexus SC430 with an unknown object.

He turned on the porch light before walking outside, and she got into her Pontiac Grand Prix and fled toward Canada Road. He found many scratches all over the Lexus as well as his Mercedes-Benz CLK350 and Mercedes-Benz C300. He estimated total damages at $12,000. A crime scene deputy took photos of the scene.

He said the woman is an acquaintance but they have never been involved in a domestic relationship.

Justin Lake Cove (identity theft)

A resident on the 9800 block of Justin Lake Cove discovered more than $700 in unfamiliar transactions on his checking account and reported them on April 25.

The charges included three charges of $84.95 and one of $3.95, all on April 24 to W/MM Holding LLC; as well as charges of $174.12, $157.11 and $146.91, all to Walmart on April 24. The transactions totaled $736.94.

The victim said he last used his ATM debit card at 680 Germantown Road, where an observer saw him put the car into the ATM, noticed it was declined and told him to try it again. The ATM then approved the transaction. The observer is a suspect.

April 26

Swingbridge Cove (forcible rape)

A forcible rape was reported at an address on Swingbridge Cove on April 26. The incident happened between 2 a.m. and 7:19 a.m. Currently, no additional information is publicly available on this case.

April 28

Creekwood Lane (simple assault)

A woman reported her daughter’s boyfriend for assaulting her at her home on April 28. When she arrived home that day around 4:20 p.m., he was there with her daughter. She told him to leave and that he isn’t allowed on her property because of his past violent history.

She said he swore at her, told her to get out of his face, pushed her and grabbed her shirt, ripping it off and then spitting at her face.

The daughter said she told him not to come on the property and to park across the street, where she would bring their son to him. He refused, pulled up to the house and waited in the yard for their son, she said.

She backed up her mother’s story of the argument and assault.

The man was not on scene at the time of the report.

April 29

Davies Plantation Road (motor vehicle theft/other)

A suspect was reported mid-day April 29 for stealing an E-Z-Go range picker at the Stonebridge Golf Course at 3049 Davies Plantation Road.

Deputies arrived at 12:20 p.m. to search for the suspect, described as a black male wearing black pants and a black shirt with white writing on it.

A witness saw the man jump into the range picker (a golf cart customized for retrieving golf balls) and head south on the golf course around 12:05 p.m. He pursued the man, who bailed off the range picker at Hole No. 2 and ran east across Davies Plantation. The witness pursued the suspect but lost sight of him around Elm Hill and Elm Hill Cove.

Deputies set up a perimeter, and after a brief pursuit spotted a man fitting the description in front of 9805 Kings Bridge. They detained him without incident.

The deputies noticed an open window at one of the homes in the area and asked the suspect if he’d entered one of the homes. He responded, “No, I was just running from those guys.”

The witness identified him as the suspect. Deputies returned the range picker to the witness, who said the vehicle is valued at $10,000, and it contained 3,000 golf balls valued at $1,000.

The suspect was arrested and charged with two counts of theft of property.