Friday, May 31, 2019

Police Work Is Boring Until It's Not

Major announcement from the North Bay Village Police Department.  

Following a report of a stolen BMW from a local resident, the North Bay Village Police Department detective bureau began what looked like a routine investigation.  Det. Brent worked with the victim to establish information channels and by tracking down the previous owner of the car, was able to activate the car's tracking device.  Det. Cassais took that geo data and coordinated with the other police departments to track and arrest the suspects.

The three arrests made as a result of this detective work are allegedly connected with over 60 open cases.

Good news from a police department that knows how to do its job.  

Wait! It Was Nowhere Near That Boring...

The rest of the story is amazingly cool and belongs on a cop reality show.

The BMW owner reported it stolen on May 16 and had some video.  Detective Brent asked if there was a tracking device on the car and there was but it was not turned on by the current owner.  Rather than wait two days or so to reestablish the tracker, Brent did some shoe leather work and found the previous owner, in Michigan.  After first convincing the previous owner that Brent was not a scamster, they activated the tracker and the car showed up around LeJeune and 40th.

Det. Cassais then got on to the other police agencies in the area and in the early morning (like 0'Dark Thirty early) North Bay Village police along with the City of Miami and the M-D County police followed the pings and watched the driver as he moved around the neighborhood.

What happened next was described to me as "like a goshdarn* movie".   The Miami police helicopter was tracking the car through the neighborhood and several units were on the BMW.

Figuring out where the driver was going next, Brent changed direction and came on to him from the west.  The driver decided to make a run and took off toward LeJeune where instead of turning, he plowed across traffic and smashed into an oncoming car, really messing up the car* but fortunately not the occupants, then because the suspect's a genius* tried to climb out the sunroof and run away.  That plan didn't work and he was quickly apprehended.

Turns out that this was not one isolated incident.  This arrest closed 60 separate stolen car incidents.  Allegedly, confessions were flying yesterday morning and all because after 59 successful heists, it looks like they made a mistake.  They came to North Bay Village.

*footnotes:  the cop describing the scene did not say "goshdarn" or "messing up the car."  He used an older Anglo Saxon intensifier but I don't want to drop F bombs in the blog.  Also, the driver is not a genius.  

Nice, But What The Heck Was Ceasar Costa Doing?

You know Ceasar Costa.  He's got hands the size of baseball mitts and talks really slow?  Seriously, I finish my taxes faster than he finishes a sentence.

Turns out he's the Columbo* of North Bay Village.

Costa was recognized by the US Attorney's office for his 2018 help in convicting a businessman for his extra legal activities.

He was at the US Attorney's office to receive the certificate pictured on the right while the above incident played out.

You might wonder about the crimes?  I did.   Well, it turns out that Costa worked with the DEA agent while on loan from North Bay Village and was a major player in bringing down MI SANGRE, one Henry de Jesus Lopez Londoño, a 47 year old Colombian who was convicted last year in Miami.  According to the prosecution "Lopez Londoño was involved in moving tens of thousands of kilos of cocaine into the United States between 2006 and 2012 and ordered assassinations, kidnappings and extortion."  MI SANGRE ratted out his coworkers and wrongly thought that this gave him immunity from all future crimes as well.  It didn't.  

Anyway, our small town Columbo* Costa was doing some pretty big league stuff.   You can read more about the case here.  

In most cities, this would be a big deal.  A major car theft ring busted, a cop puts away a Colombian drug lord.  I'm really glad our police are back because for the North Bay Village police, it's Thursday.   

*For my younger readers, Columbo was a fictional detective made famous by actor Peter Falk.   

He was known for talking really slow (like Costa) and getting it right to the point when it mattered (like Costa)

Hope this clears things up.  

Kevin Vericker
May 31, 2019

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