Law enforcement has charged an Indiana man with burglary after neighborhoods in south Manatee County were hit with a string of overnight thefts from unlocked vehicles last weekend.
Michael Martin, 38, was arrested by Sarasota police on Wednesday on warrants out of Manatee County, the Manatee County Sheriff's Office said in a news release Thursday.
Martin is also under investigation for burglaries that took place in Sarasota County, the sheriff's office said. He has previously been arrested on similar charges.
Deputies say they used surveillance photos and other evidence to identify Martin as a suspect, which took place on Saturday in neighborhoods between Lockwood Ridge Road and Palm Aire Drive.
Martin is accused of taking cash, gift cards, a laptop and garage door openers. Deputies say Martin used one of the garage door openers to enter a residence and take a set of golf clubs.
"Through a series of investigative leads, detectives positively identified Martin as the person responsible for the burglaries and learned that he was staying at different motel locations in the Sarasota area," the release said. "Warrants were signed for his arrest and detectives made contact with Martin by telephone, encouraging him to meet with deputies for an interview, but he declined each time."
Police eventually found Martin sitting in his vehicle in the parking lot of the Sleep Inn at 900 University Parkway.
Law enforcement searched Martin's vehicle and found suspected stolen items, including computer tablets and cellphone chargers.
"MCSO detectives believe he is likely responsible for several other burglary cases in Manatee County," the news release said.
Sarasota police also charged Martin with possession of cocaine and drug paraphernalia.
As of Thursday afternoon, he remained in custody at the Sarasota County Jail, where he was held in lieu of $2,000 bond.