7 Polk teens arrested in 3 separate crimes - WFLA News Channel 8

7 Polk teens arrested in 3 separate crimes

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Ryan Henderson, Stephan St. Martin, and Garrett Pate. They were arrested in connection with a series of car burglaries. Ryan Henderson, Stephan St. Martin, and Garrett Pate. They were arrested in connection with a series of car burglaries.
POLK COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

With just a week until students return to school, Polk deputies arrested seven teenagers in three separate crimes.

Law enforcement officials say they often see a spike in crimes committed by teens in the final days of summer.

On Sunday afternoon, a mother of four returned to her Lakeland home to find the door unlocked.  She heard glass breaking, and saw three teenagers taking off.

Lakeland Police caught up with Alfonzo Graham, 15, and his brother Kendrick, 16.  Both face burglary charges.  Police were able to capture the pair because the alleged victim, Sherry Waltman-Wegley, followed them in her car.

"I swerved, somewhat in front of them into the parking lot," said Waltman-Wegley.  "I got out and said, "It's like this, you're either coming back with me, cleaning up your mess, giving us our stuff back, or the cops are coming". Thank God out of the corner of my eye the cops were already there."

Also Sunday, deputies arrested Stephan St. Martin, 15, Ryan Henderson and Garrett Pate, both 16.

Deputies say they caught the trio of teens opening unlocked cars in the Island Walk subdivision and taking the items they found inside.  It's a crime called "car hopping".

Lakeland Police also busted their own pair of accused car hoppers.  Officers say Gregory Facey and Kaelan Granville, both 14, only managed to burglarize one car before an alarm went off.

One investigator said things like car hopping are crimes of opportunity that can be prevented if people lock up their valuables. 

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