Burglaries aggravate Bradenton Beach condo owners, visitors

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Runaway Bay condos in Bradenton Beach was the scene of multiple vehicle burglaries in January. Islander Photo: Kathy Prucnell

A string of vehicle burglaries hit the Runaway Bay condominium complex in Bradenton Beach.

Owners of a 1999 Saturn, 2009 Cadillac, 2013 Lexus and 2013 Ford reported their vehicles were entered by an unknown person or persons while parked outside the condos in the 1800 block of Gulf Drive North Jan. 7-10.

The owners found glove compartments and consoles rummaged through, papers strewn and items stolen, according to Bradenton Beach police reports.

Reported missing from Saturn was a computer keyboard, headset and travel sack valued at $265.

From the Cadillac, car keys and a military pin, having an estimated $60 value, were taken. The Cadillac’s owner told police she heard a bang at 1:30 a.m. Jan. 8 but didn’t investigate until the morning.

A $10 wallet containing credit cards was stolen from the Lexus.

The Ford’s owner reported a missing AAA emergency kit valued at $20.

In each burglary, the vehicle had been unlocked, according to Bradenton Beach Police Detective Sgt. Lenard Diaz, who said Feb. 1 that no suspects had been identified in the January string.

Burglars also struck beach parking lots in mid-November 2018.

Six smash-and-grab beach burglaries were reported at Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach and Bayfront Park in Longboat Key Nov. 14-19, 2018 — with purses and other valuable left visible in the vehicles.

Diaz said he is pursuing leads in the November burglaries.

Longboat Key Detective Lt. Robert Bourque, also working on the police investigation, said Diaz is closer to cracking the November case.

“The biggest thing is locking your vehicle — it’s pretty simple,” Diaz said.

Also important is not leaving valuables on the seats and floorboards, he added.

“You have to think. You’re on an island with vacationers, and burglars are going to find that attractive,” Diaz said.

Anyone with information is encouraged to call Bradenton Beach police at 941-778-4766 or to report anonymous tips, call CrimeStoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477).

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One thought on “Burglaries aggravate Bradenton Beach condo owners, visitors

  1. Wade Gunter

    How is Detective Sgt. Lenard Diaz still with the Brandenton Beach Police Department??? I just saw that 20/20 episode about Sheena Morris. I’m an ex deputy, and he is as incompetent as it gets!!!! Remind me to never visit Brandenton Beach. Just unreal.


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