February 7, 2015

Homestead man faces charges for stealing from Key Largo store

A Homestead man is in jail accused of stealing items from a Key Largo store and for stealing rods and reels from a boat.

The clerk from the Family Dollar store at the 105.6 mile marker of the highway called the Sheriff’s Office shortly after 2 p.m. Friday. She said a man just left the store with a bag full of items he had not paid for.

When Deputy Jean Gonzalez arrived at the store, he viewed a video of the theft and radioed a description of the suspect to Sheriff’s dispatchers. Deputy Dave Campbell was in the area and began looking for the man. The clerk told Deputy Gonzalez the man entered the store with two women. She said one woman stood outside while the other bought cigarettes. She said the woman who bought the cigarettes then gave the Family Dollar bag to the man. She said the man filled the bag with items from the store, including dozens of CDs, DVDs and XBOX games. He then left the store with the items without paying.

Deputy Campbell spotted a man fitting the suspect’s description on Grassy Road. He was stuffing fishing rods and reels into the rear of a vehicle. When the deputy confronted him, he dropped the rods and reels and ran. He was apprehended a short distance away.

Investigations revealed the rods and reels had been taken from a nearby boat belonging to a woman who lives in the neighborhood. The items stolen from the Family Dollar store were inside the car. The two women and a young girl were also in the car.


30 year old Darrin Galarza of Homestead was arrested. He faces charges of vehicle burglary, two counts of theft, trespassing and resisting arrest. Charges may be brought against one or both of the women with him as accomplices. That investigation is continuing.

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