Police Dogs Nab Car Theft Suspects in Swamp, Hillsborough Deputies Say
A neighborhood dog was shot during the chase. No K9 officers were injured, according to the Hillsborough sheriff.
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY – Two Plant City men were arrested Thursday (Dec. 14) after police dogs tracked them into a swamp where they were hiding from deputies, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
Jonathan Gerardo Lozada, 19, of Plant City was charged with resist an officer obstruction without violence and grand theft of a motor vehicle. He is also facing an additional charge of grand theft of a motor vehicle based on a separate warrant issued by the Hillsborough sheriff. Additionally, he is facing other charges based on two warrants from the Tampa Police Department: robbery – residence home invasion with firearm or other deadly weapon, firing weapon – discharge firearm from vehicle, aggravated assault – with deadly weapon without intent to kill, possession of weapon or ammunition by convicted Florida felon, carrying concealed weapon unlicensed firearm, aggravated battery person uses a deadly weapon, and robbery carjacking with firearm or weapon.
Thomas A. Nolasco, 21, of Plant City, is charged with vehicle theft – grand theft of motor vehicle, resist officer obstruction without violence, and probation violation.
Deputies said they found a gun at the scene and further charges may be forthcoming pending the outcome of the ongoing investigation.
The pursuit began about 1 p.m. Thursday (Dec. 14) when a Deputy on routine patrol spotted a possible stolen vehicle near Milagro Court and Blackjack Road in Dover. The deputy was turning around to attempt to pull over the vehicle, which Nolasco was driving, when it took off and ran through a stop sign. Nolasco and Lozada jumped from the vehicle near 3820 Lindsey St. in Dover and fled on foot.
Deputies said both men ran through several fenced yards and were confronted by multiple dogs in one of the yards. One of men fired a shot at the dogs and hit one of them. Deputies have not identified who fired the gun. The dog suffered a gunshot wound and ran underneath a house.
The dog’s condition is unknown at this time. Hillsborough County Pet Resources took the animal to provide treatment.
Nolasco and Lozada ran and hid in a nearby swamp until they were located by Hillsborough sheriff’s deputies Guerra and Bandit along with Ray and Justice. They were taken into custody without further incident.
For information about the Hillsborough sheriff, go to hcso.tampa.fl.us.
Main photo shows Jonathan Gerardo Lozada, left, and Thomas Avelardo Nolasco. Photos courtesy of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
Hillsborough Sheriff | Crime | Arrests | Car Theft | Tampabay News
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