A Florida woman and her man friend were jailed after Marion County sheriff’s detectives reported catching them in the act of stealing a catalytic converter from a vehicle at an Ocala preschool.
Detectives were conducting surveillance with the assistance of an aviation unit in the area of 3731 N.E. 7th Street in Ocala when they spotted a white Ford Sport Trac pickup pull into the Building Blocks of Ocala Preschool, located at 3731 N.E. 7th St., at about 4:20 a.m.
Detectives were familiar with the vehicle, which was occupied by 36-year-old Danielle Elizabeth Burnsworth and 20-year-old Reilly Kelly McCoy. Detectives believed they had been involved in similar catalytic convertor thefts at Cradling Hands Pediatric Care and Solar Guys, both of which are located in Ocala, a sheriff’s office report states.
Detectives reported seeing McCoy exit the pickup with a reciprocating saw and crawl under a 2001 Dodge 3500 transportation van, where the sound of metal being cut was heard. Detectives and deputies then converged on the pickup and Burnsworth attempted to start the vehicle but was unsuccessful. Burnsworth was then ordered to exit the pickup and a yellow reciprocating saw with a red blade dropped to the ground, the report says.
McCoy then crawled from beneath the transportation van and fled. He was apprehended by a detective a short time later after entering a nearby woodline, the report says, adding that surveillance videos from the other businesses showed suspects who matched descriptions for Burnsworth and McCoy, as well as the white Ford pickup.
After being read their rights, both Burnsworth and McCoy refused to speak with deputies. They were placed under arrest and transported to the Marion County Jail.
Burnsworth, who is originally from California, was charged with three counts of larceny/grand theft and two counts of criminal mischief. She also was ordered into custody on three counts of contempt of court and held on $19,000 bond on the new charges and no bond on the contempt of court charges.
McCoy was charged with three counts of larceny/grand theft, three counts of criminal mischief and resisting an officer without violence. He also faces charges for failure to appear in court and probation violations for possession of methamphetamine and uttering a forged instrument. He was being held on no bond on the failure to appear charges and $21,000 on the other charges , jail records show.