Gloves at crime scene ties alleged Polk County robber to his crime

Polk County

Polk County Sheriff’s Office detectives say a pair of blue gloves helped link a suspect to his crime.

“They had like the long masks on covering their faces,” clerk Dassa Barber told News Channel 8. “He was holding the knife, [saying] open the drawer, open the door.”

The night before Halloween, Barber experienced more than the usual fright.

“I was like, wow, I’m like am I going to live through this or what,” she said.

Surveillance video shows two men run into the Lake Wales Food Mart wearing masks, hoodies and gloves to disguise their appearance. The suspects allegedly threatened Barber with a knife and made off with cash and cigarettes. 

As they ran out of the store, the suspects made a crucial mistake by tossing their blue gloves in the parking lot, detectives said. 

The gloves were then sent to FDLE and the DNA matched a man named Julio Aponte, according to the sheriff’s office.  

The PCSO said Aponte was already sitting in jail for another robbery he allegedly committed a week later at the La Botana, which is less than a mile away from the other crime scene.

The owner of the food mart says getting robbed is a constant fear in their business. He’s happy the suspected crook helped put himself behind bars.

“He left the gloves in the parking lot around here, you know, that’s the craziest, dumbest criminal. I would say,” Lake Wales Food Mart Owner Jitendra Patel said.

“I’m a firm believer in karma. I treat people nicely and kind to everybody, but karma eventually catches when you do something wrong,” Barber said. 

Detectives said Aponte has not provided the name of his accomplice. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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