Hillsborough neighborhoods see car break-ins, thefts

Surveillance image shows stolen car in background.

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla.  (WFLA) –  Some residents on Celtic Ash Drive in Ruskin were awakened early Saturday morning by Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies after a gang of teens went through the neighborhood overnight and broke into several cars and stole at least two.

Deputies say it is still early in the investigation and would only tell News Channel 8 that there were “multiple” thefts and “multiple” break-ins but neighbors on this one road alone said the teens had somehow made their way into 13 vehicles.  Some neighbors said even more, as many as possibly 30 cars were either broken or stolen.

Surveillance video uncovered by News Channel 8 shows about half a dozen teenagers going from house to house trying to see if car doors would open.  Several doors did and the video shows the teens riffling through the vehicles.

More video uncovered exclusively by News Channel 8 shows a white Ultimate and a silver truck that were stolen and then just moments later the two vehicles speeding down the street.

Investigators also confirmed there have been incidents in Ruskin, Apollo Beach, and Riverview.

“Got up the next morning to take the dogs out around five and my truck was gone and my white car was open,” said David Hernandez who lives on Celtic Ash Drive. He said investigators recovered his truck that same day and showed it to News Channel 8 moments after he pulled in the driveway Monday afternoon.

He told us it was found on the side of the road after it had been in several crashes.  He said the teens had run out of gas.  He’s still trying to figure out how the teens stole it in the first place. He said the truck was locked and so was his white car.

Some neighbors on the street hope this will serve as a wake-up call. When asked if it shocks him if these incidents happened on his street,  Ron Langhans said, “”No, I think we get complacent sometimes and you can look around and see that some of the street lights are out at night.”

Hernandez is still in shock it actually happened here.  “This is actually a really nice neighborhood,” he said.  “Everybody knows everybody.”

If you know anything about any of these crimes in any of the three neighborhoods, you’re urged to call the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.

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