A 30-year-old Silver Springs man was arrested after being accused of stealing a male victim’s wallet at a local Circle K.
On Monday, April 18, a Marion County Sheriff’s Office corporal responded to the Circle K located at 15877 E Highway 40 in Silver Springs in reference to a theft. Upon arrival, the male victim stated that his wallet, which had been kept inside his vehicle, had been stolen.
According to the victim, his vehicle had two flat tires and was parked near the gas station’s air pump. A stranger, later identified as Jeffrey Allen Jones, approached the victim and offered to help him change both tires.
The victim described Jones as a heavyset man with numerous tattoos who was wearing shorts and a blue tank top. Jones began helping the victim with the flat tires, and then Jones allegedly made a comment that he was going to head out to get new tires.
Jones drove away from the gas station, and the victim waited for him to return. After waiting for around an hour, the victim received a security alert on his cellphone that asked if he had just attempted a $257.50 purchase with his debit card.
The victim responded to the alert and confirmed that he did not attempt that transaction. As a result, his debit card was blocked and the attempted transaction failed to go through.
The victim then realized that his wallet, which had been inside the cup holder in his vehicle, was now missing. According to the victim, the wallet contained his driver’s license, debit card, and approximately $10 in cash.
On Tuesday, April 19, an MCSO detective reviewed the video surveillance footage from the previous day. A silver GMC SUV with black roof rails and a white sicker on the rear windshield pulled up alongside the victim’s vehicle at around 11:35 a.m.
Jones was observed exiting the SUV, and his outfit matched the victim’s description. On the footage, Jones appeared to help the victim with the tires on the passenger’s side of the vehicle for several minutes.
At 11:48 a.m., the victim began to dig around in the trunk of his vehicle, and he later told the detective that he was looking for his spare tire. During this time, Jones was observed opening the front passenger door, and he proceeded to reach inside the victim’s vehicle.
The MCSO report indicated that Jones slowly shut the passenger door and walked towards the trunk where the victim was still looking for the spare tire. At 11:49 a.m., Jones left the parking lot and appeared to travel northbound on NE Highway 314A.
Through an investigation, the detective was able to positively identify the SUV as a 2004 GMC Envoy that was registered to Jones. A criminal history search of Jones revealed that he had several prior theft convictions in Marion County.
A photo lineup of six suspects, including Jones, was presented to the victim, and he positively identified Jones as the man who was at the gas station at the time of the theft.
Jones was located, arrested, and transported to Marion County Jail at around 10:35 p.m. on Thursday, April 28. He is currently being held on $9,000 bond, and he is facing felony charges for burglary, second degree petit theft (third or subsequent offense), and fraud.
A court date has not been scheduled yet, according to jail records.