Credit cards

Woman charged with breaking into Polk County cars, using credit cards stolen from Dollar General

A smash and grab thief is on the loose in Polk County.

Multiple local law enforcement agencies, including the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the Lakeland Police Department, are looking for a woman linked to at least five vehicle burglaries in the past six weeks.

“If you leave something of value in plain sight, they’re willing to take the risk of breaking a window because it only takes seconds,” Lakeland police spokeswoman Robin Tillett said at Fox 13.

Two break and enters have occurred at Common Ground Park in Central Lakeland. In both cases, the vehicles were locked.

Polk County investigators are looking for a woman they believe breaks into cars in area parks and uses stolen credits from a Dollar General.

The woman, captured in surveillance photos, can be seen checking out cars and then choosing one in particular. She backs her car, a silver four-door Toyota, into the parking space next to her target.

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In less than a minute, she gets out, breaks the window and leaves.

Investigators say after each smash and grab, she heads to the nearest Dollar General where she uses stolen credit cards to buy gift cards.

CCTV footage of a woman, according to Polk County investigators, breaking into cars at area parks and using stolen credits from a Dollar General.

Polk County investigators are looking for a woman they believe breaks into cars in area parks and uses stolen credits from a Dollar General.

Cars in Lake Wales and Winter Haven were also hit.

The suspect pulled a purse from a car at Simmons Young Park in Winter Haven, but left several valuables behind which she apparently missed.

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“The victim also had another wallet in the vehicle which was not impacted, even a firearm in the vehicle which was not impacted,” said Polk Sheriff’s Office spokesman Brian Bruchey.

Anyone with information about the smash and seizures is asked to call Heartland Crime Stoppers at 1-800 226-8477.