A 60-year-old man on felony probation was arrested in Ocala after several Marion County Sheriff’s Office deputies spotted him in a stolen sports utility vehicle.
On Tuesday, the MCSO deputies located a maroon Ford Escape with a New Hampshire license plate that was traveling westbound near the 1800 block of SW Highway 484. The vehicle had been reported stolen out of Lake County.
The deputies watched as the vehicle pulled into the parking lot of the McDonald’s located at 2095 SW Highway 484. When the vehicle parked, the deputies noted in the MCSO report that no one entered or exited the vehicle.
A felony traffic stop was conducted in the parking lot. The driver, identified as Mitchel Glenn Brown, was ordered to step out of the vehicle.
Brown was detained, and he agreed to speak with the deputies. He stated that he was aware that a warrant was out for his arrest due to the unauthorized use of a vehicle, and he added that he “normally has access to the keys when he does this.”
Brown claimed that he had observed the Ford Escape running with no one inside the vehicle for approximately 45 minutes before he decided to take it. He admitted that he had used the vehicle for the past several days.
According to the MCSO report, Brown was placed on felony probation beginning on April 28, 2022 regarding a grand theft auto case in Lake County.
During a pat-down search of Brown, an MCSO deputy located a plastic baggie which contained a green leafy substance inside Brown’s pocket that later field-tested positive for marijuana. A computer search of Brown was also conducted, and the deputies discovered that his driver’s license has been suspended on nine occasions from July 16, 1984, to March 20, 2019.
Brown was arrested and transported to Marion County Jail where is he currently being held on $13,000 bond. He is facing felony charges for grand theft of a motor vehicle and violation of probation, along with misdemeanor charges for marijuana possession (less than 20 grams) and driving with a suspended license (second or subsequent offense).
A court date has not been scheduled yet, according to jail records.