KEY LARGO (CBSMiami) – A Miami Gardens man arrested last week for carjacking a toddler in Hialeah, and suspected in two Miami area bank robberies, is also wanted in connection with burglaries in the Florida Keys.
Pedro Valdes, 48, is a suspect in four business burglaries and a residential burglary in Key Largo between June 4th and June 24th. In all five cases, a rock was thrown through a glass window to gain access to the inside of the buildings.
During the course of the investigation, a check of pawn shops for property stolen in the burglaries turned up a Penn reel brought in Valdes which matched one stolen from West Marine.
Further investigation revealed Valdes is on probation. His probation officer told detectives he has a sister who lives in Key Largo, and was staying with his mother in Miami Gardens. The probation officer said Valdes requested to visit his sister several times between May and June.
In addition, a check on Sunpass activity showed the mother’s vehicle had traveled south of Homestead on numerous occasions between May and June; some of the dates coincided with the dates of the burglaries.
Surveillance photos from inside West Marine and from another store nearby showed a man fitting Valdes’ description both inside and outside the store. Detectives asked his sister to review the photos and video and she positively identified her brother as well. She also verified seeing her brother in possession of a brand new Penn reel.
Arrest warrants for Valdes have been issued for two burglaries at West Marine, on June 20th and on the 24th. The other three crimes are still under investigation and charges against him may be pending in those cases.
Last Wednesday, 3-year old Daniel Rivero’s parents had stopped to buy ice cream from truck. When they got out of their SUV, Valdes jumped in the vehicle and sped off with the child strapped into his car seat. The boy was eventually dropped off in front of a TD bank at NW 57th & 7th Street and reunited with his parents.
In addition to the carjacking, the FBI said Valdes is wanted for two armed bank robberies, one at the Regions Bank, 8373 West Flagler Street on July 13 and the other occurring at the Bank of America at 7760 West Flagler Street July 18th.