January 12, 2012

Man arrested for stolen auto; investigated for burglary


Stock Island – A Tallahassee man, arrested after he was caught driving a stolen auto, is under investigation for several burglaries.

Detective Donald Catala spotted 40 year old Robert Skinner driving the silver colored Chevrolet Silverado Wednesday afternoon. When Skinner saw the detective’s unmarked law enforcement vehicle, he began acting as if he were nervous; Detective Catala decided to run the truck’s license tag to see if Skinner had reason to be nervous. The tag revealed the truck had been reported stolen from Hillsboro County.

The truck was stopped as it left Key West, over the Cow Key Channel Bridge, by Detectives David Chavka and David Cruz and Deputy Matt Dowling. Skinner was taken into custody on the Hillsboro County grand theft auto charge.

The truck matched the description of a vehicle involved in a Key Largo burglary earlier in the day. Property found in the truck, including laptop computers, cameras, fishing equipment and ammunition, may have come from burglaries committed earlier in the day in Key Largo and on Grassy Key.

Skinner claimed a man he met at the Waffle House in Key West earlier in the day had loaned him the truck and asked him to use it to get him drugs. He also said the same man asked him to take the property in the truck to a pawn shop for him. He could not give detectives the man’s name or description. He also couldn’t explain why he had two credit cards in his wallet that did not belong to him.

Investigations are continuing as detectives attempt to match the items in the truck with the burglaries, and try to locate other items Skinner may have pawned. More charges are pending. According to detectives in Hillsboro County, Skinner is well known to them and has more charges pending there as well.

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