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Tallahassee Police arrest 'porch bandit' in the act

Posted at 10:54 AM, Apr 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-24 10:54:46-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The Tallahassee Police Department says a man wanted for burglary has been arrested after he was caught red-handed stealing a package in a police sting.

On Thursday, officers with TPD’s Community Oriented Policing and Problem Solving Squad conducted an operation in the Levy Park Neighborhood, with the cooperation of residents, in response to an increase in the theft of packages from front porches.

Around 11 a.m., officers placed two packages they had created on a front porch in the 1300 block of Martin Luther King Boulevard and began surveillance.

Within minutes of the packages being placed, the suspect, later identified as Patrick Lawrence, was spotted walking north on MLK Boulevard.

Police say he stared at the packages as he walked past and stopped just beyond the property line. After looking around, he walked up the steps to the covered front porch and took them.

He then walked away and was putting the boxes into a white plastic shopping bag when officers confronted him.

TPD says Lawrence immediately tried to run away but was caught and arrested after a short chase.

He was charged with burglary and resisting arrest. Lawrence was also already wanted for burglary at the time of the crime and was charged accordingly.