Man arrested on burglary charges
A Florida man was arrested on Saturday in connection with two burglaries in Shelton.
On Aug. 4, Shelton Police extradited Richard Ortiz, 40, from Fort Lauderdale on arrest warrants issued by Derby Superior Court. Ortiz previously lived at 33 Cedar Street, Ansonia. The warrants were related to a string of car burglaries that occurred throughout the region reported from April through June of this year.
Police said Ortiz and another suspect would break into cars driven by women who would park at fitness centers and local shopping centers. The suspects would break the window of a car after the drivers parked and left their pocketbooks inside.
After stealing the pocketbooks, the suspects would take cash and credit cards, police said. The suspects would then go to Target or Walmart stores and buy electronics using the stolen credit cards. Police identified two suspects through surveillance video from the stores.
Police from Shelton, Stratford, Derby, Milford and Trumbull worked to solve the crimes. Ortiz was arrested in Florida after a routine car stop.
Ortiz was arrested for two Shelton incidents on the charges of two counts of burglary in the third degree, two counts of conspiracy to commit burglary, two counts of Illegal use of a credit card, larceny in the fifth degree and conspiracy charges. Ortiz was held over the weekend and was scheduled to be arraigned in Derby Superior Court Monday.
Other area police departments have about a dozen of warrants for Ortiz, Shelton Police said. The state of Georgia also is looking to extradite Ortiz there for similar crimes committed after leaving Connecticut. Police have arrest warrants for a second suspect as well. The investigation is continuing.
Police reminder drivers to not leave their valuables in plain view in their cars. Anyone observing suspicious activity in parking lots is urged to call police immediately.