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Tampa condo burgled for second time this year

TAMPA — For the second time this year, someone broke into 7193 E Bank Drive, a condo in the quiet, gated Waterside Island community.

But when two men kicked in the blue metal door at 1 p.m. Thursday, someone was home.

According to Tampa Police reports, three men kicked in the condo door, ran inside and grabbed a laptop, video game system, flat screen TV, $1,400 and a loaded gun. Then they ran out of the condo and jumped into a silver 1993 Buick.

The man inside, who lives there with his wife and child, neighbors say, called the police, who caught up with the suspects seven miles away.

The report said police used a helicopter to corner the men after a high-speed chase through residential areas.

The trio jumped out of the Buick, leaving most of the loot at the entrance of Regency Square Apartments, police said.

The three were picked up in the adjoining apartment complex. They were identified by police as Javarius Taylor, 22, of 12712 N Ninth St., Arnold Chapman, 17, of 1404 Cartier Drive, and Jamarcus Sapp, 19, of 12407 Joel Court.

They have been charged with armed burglary, grand theft, and resisting arrest without violence and are being held at Orient Road Jail with no bail.

Waterside Islands, which sits on the bank of the Hillsborough river, is patrolled on foot daily by Critical Intervention Services, a private security company. And it has an electric gate that remains closed 24 hours a day.

Even so, this isn't the first time someone has gotten past security.

Before the current resident of unit 7193 even moved in, the condo was burgled, said Andrea Davis, a police spokeswoman. Someone broke in May 11.

Janice Opokunuamah, 45, who lives several doors down from the condo, said she didn't hear anything about the home invasion or burglary from the police or condo association.

She has been living there for two years and doesn't leave home much because of her epilepsy.

"I'm scared now because I don't know how this happened," she said.

Robbyn Mitchell can be reached at (813) 226-3373 or rmitchell@sptimes.com.

Tampa condo burgled for second time this year 12/12/08 [Last modified: Friday, December 12, 2008 11:17pm]
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