LAKE CITY, Fla. -- A Lake City man is behind bars Friday, caught in the act trying to steal scrap metal from a recycling center.
The Lake City Police Department says officers on a burglary call caught 34-year-old Frezell Rowe breaking into the Recycling Center on N. Marion Avenue at 2:10 a.m. Thursday. They tell Action News this isn't the first time the recycling center has been burglarized.
Between May 18, 2012 and August 16, 2012, the recycling center was the victim of burglary on at least 4 different occasions. In the early morning hours of May 22, 2012, the owner, Mr. Brian Linton, reported an overnight burglary involving two unknown male suspects that were later arrested trying to sell the stolen scrap metal at another location.
After taking the initial report on a burglary occurring August 15th and hearing about a previous burglary six days earlier on August 9th, Officer Connie Hightower and Shift Commander, Sergeant Larry Shallar, coordinated a burglary detail to catch those responsible for the thefts. Multiple Lake City officers from several different divisions participated.
On August 16, 2012, the burglary detail was in place at the recycling center. At 2:10 a.m., Rowe entered through a break in the fence, which was damaged from the burglary on May 18th. He was wearing all black clothing and a stocking-style cap on top of his head. When officers observed him in the process of going through a pile of scrap metal, they quickly moved in to apprehend him.
Rowe was arrested without incident. He told the officers he had burglarized this business on several other occasions. Chief Gilmore says, "I am proud of all the officers involved in this burglary detail and in their apprehension of Mr. Rowe. Officer Hightower is one of our new officers at the Police Department and her initiative reflects upon the dedication and commitment of our entire department. A job well done in service to our community."