SARASOTA -- The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office arrested a Sarasota man after a neighbor caught him scouting the area for homes to burglarize.
Deputies responded to the 2000 block of Michele Drive in Sarasota on Wednesday afternoon following the report of a burglary in progress. The neighbor first noticed 19-year-old Stefan Simmons parked in the driveway of a vacant home claiming to be looking for a room to rent.
When the neighbor told him the homeowner wasn't looking for tenants, Simmons got into his truck and drove to a cul-de-sac where he parked at another empty home. The neighbor walked to the end of the street and took photos of the vehicle's tag. As Simmons exited the rear of the home carrying something in his hands, he noticed the neighbor watching and fled the area.
Deputies confirmed the sliding glass door of the home had been pried open. They contacted the vehicle's owner, who said he was in Michigan and left his work truck with Simmons. A short time later, deputies arrested Simmons on nearby Clark Road.
Simmons, of 2403 S. Osprey Ave., is charged with burglary and being held on $1,500 bond.
The investigation is ongoing and additional charges are pending. This is his second burglary arrest in less than a year. Anyone with information on Simmons is asked to contact the Criminal Investigations Section at 941-861-4900.