LAKE WALES, Fla. (WFLA) – The Lake Wales Police Department is asking for the public’s help in finding other suspects after a man was arrested for dealing in over $400,000 worth of stolen property.
On Feb. 17, detectives with the Lake Wales Police Department received information that stolen property was being stored at 254 N Miami Street in Lake Wales.
According to a press release, detectives went to the location and obtained permission from the property owner to search for stolen items. During a “lengthy search of the heavily wooded property,” authorities located items that are believed to be valued at over $400,000.
Detectives recovered the following items:
- Two Ford Cobra Jet drag race cars that are valued at around $100,000 each, along with a two-story Haulmark car hauler trailer which had been reported stolen to Lake Placid police.
- A 32-foot Avenger travel trailer, an 18-foot open trailer and a Polaris ATV, which were reported stolen to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office taken from Highway 60 East of Lake Wales.
- A 23-foot Skeeter bay boat that had been reported stolen from Manatee County.
- A 16-foot Fisher bass boat that had been reported stolen to Bartow Police.
- An enclosed trailer containing household furniture that had been reported stolen to the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office.
- Various lawn equipment, power equipment, tools, and other items.
Police stated that during the initial investigation, Billy Joe Byrd, 51, of Lake Wales, was arrested for dealing in stolen property and transported to the Polk County Jail.
According to officials, there are other suspects in the case and more charges are expected to come as the investigation continues.
Detectives from Lake Wales are working alongside investigators from other agencies to bring charges against all parties involved. Detectives are also asking for assistance from anyone with knowledge of the thefts and suspects to contact police as you may be eligible for a cash reward.
Anyone with information on the thefts is asked to contact Detective Dave Arana at 678-4223. For those that wish to remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward through Heartland Crime Stoppers, submit a tip by doing the following:
- Call 1-800-226-8477
- From your cell phone, dial **TIPS
- Visit the website www.heartlandcrimestoppers.com and click on “Submit A Tip”
- Or download the free “P3tips” app on your smartphone or tablet.