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Thursday, June 16, 2022

Ocala couple arrested after allegedly stealing merchandise from Rural King

A man and woman from Ocala were arrested after they allegedly stole over $9,000 worth of merchandise from Rural King.

The Ocala Police Department responded to Rural King (2999 NW 10th Street) on multiple occasions during the month of June due to reports of expensive items being stolen. The OPD report indicated that the following items were stolen from the business:

  • On Friday, June 3: one motorbike ($800 value).
  • On Sunday, June 5: three motorbikes ($800 value/each).
  • On Wednesday, June 8: one ATV ($1,600 value).
  • On Wednesday, June 8: two push mowers ($400 value/each).
  • On Thursday, June 9: one zero-turn mower ($3,850 value).

The total cost of the stolen merchandise was $9,450.

OPD detectives viewed video surveillance from Rural King and utilized investigative techniques to identify two suspects who were allegedly involved in the thefts: 37-year-old Brandon Lemar Crews and 35-year-old Jessica Lynn Long.

Brandon Lemar Crews and Jessica Lynn Long
Brandon Lemar Crews (left) and Jessica Lynn Long (right)

The OPD report indicated that Crews and Long used two different trucks during the multiple thefts. Another unknown male was involved in each of these thefts but has not yet been identified.

On Thursday, June 9, detectives learned that Crews and Long were staying at the Royal Inn Motel (2900 S Pine Avenue). They were located at the motel, and detectives found two push mowers from Rural King inside of their motel room.

Both Crews and Long were taken to OPD headquarters for questioning. Detectives began by interviewing Long, and she admitted to involvement in the thefts. She claimed that Crews was the one who had planned each theft, and he allegedly enlisted the help of different people each time.

During Crews’ interview, he did not confirm or deny his involvement. According to the OPD report, he nodded his head for a majority of the interview, and he eventually told the detectives that he was tired and did not want to speak about the thefts.

Crews was arrested and transported to Marion County Jail where he is currently being held on $60,000 bond. He is facing multiple felony charges for grand theft (five counts) and burglary (four counts). A court date has been scheduled on Tuesday, July 12 at 9 a.m., according to jail records.

Long was also arrested and transported to Marion County Jail where she is currently being held on $2,000 bond. She is facing a felony charge for grand theft. A court date has not been scheduled yet, according to jail records.