Saturday, February 17, 2018
Public safety

Man confesses to robbery, carjacking and ramming patrol cars, Hillsborough deputies say

TAMPA — A 25-year-old man confessed to robbing a woman at gunpoint and stealing her car early Monday at an apartment complex, authorities said.

Jerry Lee Reid, whose address was unknown, also confessed that he rammed two patrol cars in an attempt to escape, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.

He faces charges of armed robbery, grand theft auto and two counts of aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer.

A female witness in the car with Reid, and then detained after it rammed the patrol cars, initially told detectives that another man, Marvin Davy, 26, was the driver of the stolen car.

Monday afternoon, deputies said they intended to charge Davy with grand theft auto and two counts of aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer. But after Reid confessed, deputies changed that. He now faces a possession of marijuana charge and was released from custody.

Deputies said they would release the name of the female witness at some point later. She faces obstruction charges.

The episode began when a man approached Suleyka Mary Solano-Sanchez, 24, as she was getting into her car just before 1:15 a.m. Monday at the Lakeshore Club Apartments near Egypt Lake. He asked for a cigarette.

When Solano-Sanchez told the man she doesn't smoke, he pulled out a handgun, pressed it to her stomach and demanded her purse and car keys, sheriff's spokesman Larry McKinnon said. He told her to get into the car, but she refused.

The man grabbed the keys and her purse, got in the car and drove away, McKinnon said.

Officials sent out a county-wide alert with a description of the car and the suspect. About four hours later, deputies spotted the stolen car in Seffner.

The car turned onto Valencia Drive, a dead end, as patrol units set up a road block at the open end of the street to prevent the suspect from fleeing.

It didn't quite work.

The driver turned at the end of the street and then plowed into two patrol cars in an attempt to leave the area, McKinnon said. No deputies were hurt.

The driver bolted on foot, while the female passenger was held at the scene, officials said.

Authorities, believing Davy was the carjacking suspect, tracked him to a house at 11615 Grove Lane in Seffner and evacuated neighbors just before 8 a.m.

Davy was found in the attic. Reid and a third man were also at the home, which Davy rented, according to McKinnon. The third man was not involved in the incident.

Reid has more than a dozen arrests dating to 2004, including charges for burglary, marijuana possession and battery on a law enforcement officer.

Times researcher John Martin contributed to this report.

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