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Pasco Sheriff's Office Web posting results in arrests

NEW PORT RICHEY — The Pasco County Sheriff's Office website advertised something new — surveillance photos of wanted criminals — and Danielle Freeman was curious.

According to sheriff's spokesman Kevin Doll, she said this: "What kind of idiots are caught on camera when they commit a crime?"

As Freeman browsed the Caught on Camera section, which debuted in April, she saw a faded, blurry photo taken from a store's security camera.

She recognized the suspects, Doll said. It was her, standing next to her boyfriend, Stuart Glasser, and another man.

Doll said Freeman, 22, told detectives on Wednesday that after she saw the website, she knew it was just a matter of time before authorities caught up with her and Glasser, 63. They were charged with credit card fraud as authorities said they found a wallet, stole the cards and tried to use them at several stores around west Pasco.

The new Web feature spawned an anonymous tip that led deputies to their home at 13930 Hatcher Ave. in Hudson. Detectives are looking for a third suspect, a heavyset man who also shows up in the surveillance photos taken at Kohl's, JCPenney and a Dollar General store.

Their arrests are the first to directly result from Caught on Camera, Doll said.

"Some of the ones that have been on there got media attention, which led to arrests," he said. "This is the first one solely as a result of someone who went on there calling it in."

In interviews with a detective, Freeman and Glasser admitted to picking up Robert Brunda's wallet off the ground in the parking lot of a Publix on Ridge Road on June 20, Doll said. Brunda, 22, a psychology major at Pasco-Hernando Community College, said he had spent a frantic night looking for his wallet — with $550 in cash and several credit cards — along Ridge Road, then canceling his accounts.

While Brunda was searching, Glasser, Freeman and the third suspect drove along Ridge Road with Brunda's credit cards, deputies reported.

Brunda said the trio failed to withdraw $300 from the RaceTrac ATM on Ridge Road and had one of the cards declined for a $55.27 purchase at Dollar General. But they managed to buy gas at the same RaceTrac and pay for a $300 gift card at Kohl's.

"They didn't just take the cash," Brunda said, "They went further than that. They went to half a dozen different places."

Glasser is the former president of the Tampa-based Glasser Group, a futon marketing corporation that once sold products including the Convert-a-Couch and the Monticello Oak futon set. In the spring of 1998, he made the cover of Futon Life magazine, which painted Glasser as a born salesman who began with a humble shop in Hartford, Conn., and became wealthy.

With his wife, Linda Glasser, he owned a luxury Cadillac sport sedan, a house in Hudson and two condos in St. Petersburg and Tampa.

But his marriage, his property and his business all disappeared in the last several years. Called a "match made in heaven" in Futon Life, the Glassers separated and divorced in 2008, with Linda receiving the car and condos, court records show.

He and Freeman, his new girlfriend, had their problems, too. He was ordered to pay child support to Freeman in July 2009, just nine months after she gave birth to their son.

And by September 2009, Glasser had filed for bankruptcy with a little more than $241,000 in assets and $1.2 million in debts, records show. He and Freeman had not made their bail — $500 for Glasser, $2,000 for Freeman — as of Thursday evening.

Times researcher Shirl Kennedy contributed to this report. Vivian Yee can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 869-6236.

On the web

Caught on tape

View surveillance photos of Stuart Glasser, Danielle Freeman and an unidentified third suspect at www.pascosheriff.com/webapps/COCDISP.pgm. Look for case No. 10-36959, date 2010/07/23, crime: credit card fraud.

Pasco Sheriff's Office Web posting results in arrests 07/29/10 [Last modified: Thursday, July 29, 2010 8:45pm]
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