A 19-year-old man was arrested after he was accused of stealing several four-wheelers from a residence in northeast Ocala.
On Tuesday, a Marion County Sheriff’s Office deputy responded to a residence in the 1300 block of NE 70th Street in reference to a theft investigation. Upon arrival, the deputy made contact with the female victim who stated that she woke up at approximately 7 a.m. and noticed that the four-wheelers were missing from her property.
According to the victim, the four-wheelers were parked on the east side of the residence and the keys had been left in each vehicle. She stated that she had last used the vehicles on Monday evening.
The victim’s missing vehicles were identified as a 2004 Yamaha four-wheeler ($3,000 value), 2017 Can-Am four-wheeler ($15,000 value), and 2022 Can-Am four-wheeler ($24,000 value).
The victim observed a hole in the fence near where the vehicles had been located, and fresh tire tracks headed away from the property towards NE Jacksonville Road. MCSO deputies followed those tire tracks, and the tracks disappeared in the area of NE 17th Terrace and NE Jacksonville Road.
The victim estimated that approximately $1,500 in damages were caused to her fence.
The deputy noted in the MCSO report that an eyewitness observed several four-wheelers that were being loaded into a U-Haul on the side of the road, near the intersection of 36th Avenue and Highway 329.
Multiple MCSO units responded to the area and observed the U-Haul as it headed westbound. Deputies were attempting to stop the U-Haul when it “slammed through the intersection” and hit multiple vehicles, according to the MCSO report.
A man, later identified as Clayton Trevon Hopkins, was observed exiting the U-Haul, and he began to run away from the vehicle.
Deputies pursued Hopkins on foot, and he ran toward an open field in the northwest corner of the intersection. An MCSO detective jumped over a fence on the south side of the field and shouted instructions for Hopkins to stop.
Hopkins continued to run away from the deputies and detective for approximately 150 yards. He eventually complied with the repeated commands to stop, and he laid down in the open field with his hands behind his back.
At the scene of the crash at the intersection, three four-wheelers were observed in the rear compartment of the U-Haul. After the vehicle identification numbers of the four-wheelers were searched, it was confirmed that they were the vehicles that the victim had reported as stolen earlier in the day.
MCSO attempted to interview Hopkins, but he refused to discuss the incident with investigators and advised that he wanted to speak to an attorney.
Hopkins was arrested and transported to Marion County Jail where he is currently being held on $10,000 bond. He is facing felony charges for grand theft of a motor vehicle (three counts) and criminal mischief ($1,000 or more in property damages), along with a misdemeanor charge for resisting an officer without violence.
A court date has not been scheduled yet, according to jail records.