PEMBROKE PINES (CBSMiami) – A Hollywood man believed responsible for a number of residential burglaries in the Century Village community in Pembroke Pines was arrested after he was reportedly caught red-handed trying to burglarize an apartment.
Ernesto Grimaldi told police he was in his bedroom early Wednesday evening when he heard somebody prying open the rear screen door of his patio. When he went to check it out he found a man, later identified as 52-year old Sergio Ramirez-Rodriguez, standing inside his enclosed patio.
When Ramirez-Rodriguez realized that he had been spotted, he took off, according to his arrest report.
“I yelled and he took off running and I went after him,” said Grimaldi.
Pembroke Pines police said just before 7:30 p.m. they received a 9-1-1 call about an undressed man running through the community.
Neighbors weren’t sure what to think as they saw Grimaldi running through Century Village with no clothes on. They called 911. As police arrived, the chase continued. At one point, he said Ramirez got tired and tried to strike a deal.
“He offered me a hundred dollars,” Grimaldi said.
Ramirez was hoping the deal would entice Gramaldi to stop chasing him. It didn’t work.
Grimaldi chased him through a hole in the fence and to Ramirez’ waiting “get-a-way” car.
“The suspect got in the driver’s seat and the victim was not letting him close the door,” explained Pembroke Pines Police Captain Al Xiques. “He finally took off and later on down the road the vehicle was stopped by police and all the pieces were put together.”
When officers arrived, they caught up with Grimaldi and stopped a green mini-van with Ramirez-Rodriguez and two other men inside.
Grimaldi told the officers that he chased Ramirez-Rodriguez through the golf course and watched as he went through a hole in the fence to the waiting mini-van.
When they checked the car, they found more than 200 pieces of jewelry, glasses, even a blood pressure cuff.
Police say all these items are hot.
Officers ran a check on Ramirez-Rodriguez and found that he was wanted for a trio of traffic and driver license violations. He was arrested and charged with burglary.
When officers tried to question him, he did not cooperate.
“When the investigator read Mr. Ramirez his rights, Mr. Ramirez’ only statement was “I’ll take my chances in court,” said Capt. Xiques.
The two men in the van, identified as 49-year old Bennett Bowen and 46-year old Heriberto Ramos, were charged with loitering/prowling.
Police believe Ramirez-Rodriguez is responsible for for up to 11 burglaries in Century Village since the beginning of the year. All of the burglaries were of first floor apartments, which were entered via an open sliding door, window, or with the use of a pry tool. They add that Ramirez-Rodriguez is a serial burglar and has been arrested numerous times for burglaries and break ins dating back to 1986.