By Kevin Deutsch
Officers arrested a pair of car burglars in Coconut Creek, including one armed with an AR-15, after the duo broke into a car in Winston Park Plaza, police said.
According to Coconut Creek Police, officers spotted Julio Rodriguez-Vidal, 34, and Dunia Romero, 23, both of Hialeah, when they arrived at the plaza to investigate a report of an armed car burglary on March 18.
Both accused burglars were taken into custody without incident, police said.
Rodriguez-Vidal, a convicted felon, was in possession of an AR-15 and a handgun during the burglary, according to police. He was charged with armed vehicle burglary, commission of a felony with a gun, possession of a firearm as a convicted felon, and several drug-related charges, including possession of Xanax, Percocet, and methamphetamine.
Officers charged Romero with armed car burglary because a witness saw both her and Rodriguez-Vidal inside the victim’s vehicle, which had been left unlocked, police said.
Officers said they recovered numerous stolen items from the suspects’ vehicle, including wallets, cell phones, a Rolex wristwatch, credit cards, and catalytic converters.
“At this point, it appears this couple went all over Broward County stealing pretty much anything that wasn’t nailed down,” police wrote in a Facebook post. “And some stuff that was, in that there were several catalytic converters in their possession.”
Both accused burglars were taken to the Broward Main Jail, where they were being held without bond Tuesday, records show.
Police are also asking the public to examine the stolen items to help identify their owners, as well as other potential victims of the duo.
Tipsters can call Coconut Creek Police at 954-973-6700.
The investigation is ongoing, police said, and additional charges are possible.
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- Kevin Deutsch is an award-winning crime journalist and author. A graduate of Florida International University, Kevin has worked on staff at The Miami Herald, New York Daily News, and The Palm Beach Post.
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