LAKE WALES, Fla. - Polk deputies have arrested Tahj Lee Scott, 19, along with a 17-year-old, both of Orlando, for multiple car burglaries in Lake Wales. Deputies say Scott was out on bond at the time of the burglaries for the same charge, burglary of a conveyance in Lake County. Both teens have criminal histories, according to the Polk County Sheriff's Office.
During the early morning hours of August 13, 2020, deputies responded to the Country Oaks Subdivision in Lake Wales after residents called PCSO to report several of their unlocked vehicles had been burglarized.
Security video from the area was obtained and revealed two suspects, one wearing a black t-shirt and the other wearing a black hoodie.
The two teens were caught quickly. When deputies searched the teens they said they discovered several pieces of stolen property from the car burglaries, including credit cards belonging to the victims and a key to a stolen vehicle. The key unlocked a 2014 Subaru SUV located near the burglaries. The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office confirmed the Subaru was reported as stolen. Seven burglary victims have been identified in the neighborhood.
“These two prolific criminals have 88 criminal charges combined – all before they’ve even turned 20 years old," Polk County Sheriff' Grady Judd said. "Taking their criminal exploits on the road, they prey on victims all over Central Florida. Because of my deputies’ great work, they were quickly taken off the streets before they could victimize anyone else. Our Florida criminal justice system and our legislators must take these prolific teenaged criminals more seriously. These two and many others are committing hundreds of thefts throughout central Florida. I also have a message for our citizens to take away from this: lock up your belongings—don’t make it easy for these criminals to steal your hard-earned property. Unlocked vehicles are easy targets for criminals.”
This investigation is on-going because more victims could come forward.