MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Opa-Locka Police Chief James Dobson has asked for the public’s help in finding the criminal who stole nearly two dozen titles to vehicles.
Dobson released surveillance tape exclusively Tuesday to CBS4’s Peter D’Oench and said the thief was captured on camera on the afternoon of September 11th outside Miami World Auto Sales at 4176 N.W. 132nd St. breaking into an unlocked 2005 Hummer.
Dobson said Fernando Rodriguez, who works for Y & Z Auto Sales in northwest Miami-Dade was visiting the business and had left his Hummer unlocked for 40 minutes. Inside the vehicle was an envelope with the titles to 20 vehicles and his dealer license plate PG7 29S.
The surveillance tape shows a man in a white shirt getting out of a what appears to be a white Toyota and quickly going into, and out of, the Hummer and then leaving.
It’s not known if the suspect is tied to an organized group of title thieves but Dobson is concerned.
“We are looking for help about this individual,” said Dobson. “And that’s why we are bringing this tape to you and appeal to your viewers. We don’t know very much about this person. We do know that at least 20 car titles were taken and there was fraudulent activity. We don’t know what his intent was but there is a lot of personal information on those titles about people and their homes and these people could become victims of auto theft and identity theft.”
“We are pleading with people not to leave their doors unlocked and we would definitely like to get this person off the street,” said Dobson. “You can help us by helping yourselves and locking your vehicles. This was definitely a crime of opportunity and this guy knew exactly what he was doing. When we take this person into custody, we will hopefully be able to find all sorts of information out about these titles and who was victimized here and we need to get that information to those people.”
Rodriguez told CBS4 that he would like to get the titles returned.
Dobson said anyone with information that can help should call Opa-Locka police or Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS(8477).