Bradenton man jailed after computer theft, car chase

jdeleon@bradenton.comSeptember 5, 2013 


BRADENTON -- A 29-year-old Bradenton man was arrested after allegedly stealing a computer from Walmart and colliding with another vehicle in his van while trying to run from police.

Gary Balisciano was arrested at 10:26 p.m. Tuesday in the 3700 block of Cortez Road West in Bradenton.

Balisciano appeared before Manatee County Judge Charles Sniffen Wednesday afternoon to face charges of grand theft, fleeing to elude, reckless driving, driving with a suspended license and leaving the scene of a crash.

Sniffen ordered him held without bond on a warrant issued by Manatee County Judge Thomas Krug for failing to appear in court on a 2012 grand theft case.

Police say Balisciano was reportedly seen by loss prevention personnel as he walked out the front door of the Walmart at 5315 Cortez Road W. in Bradenton with a computer in his hands.

Police arrived as Balisciano was leaving the parking lot in his van. An officer pulled into the same aisle as Balisciano, who threw his van into reverse. Police followed Balisciano's van as it exited the parking lot onto Cortez Road heading east.

Balisciano's van picked up

speed before crossing over into westbound lanes in the 4300 block of Cortez Road. Cars were forced to make evasive maneuvers and go onto the median to avoid a head-on collision, according to the arrest report.

Police say Balisciano's van then hit an SUV in the 3700 block of Cortez Road, which brought the chase to a halt. Police ordered him to exit the vehicle, and he tried restart the van, but the transmission was shot and Balisciano finally got out, according to the report.

Sniffen appointed the Public Defender's Office to defend Balisciano and ordered bond set on all remaining charges at $9,360.

Balisciano remains in the Manatee County jail. His next scheduled court appearance is Sept. 27.

Jessica De Leon, law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter @JDeLeon1012.

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