Terrance Marino of Fort Lauderdale, Florida was arrested Tuesday for allegedly stealing patches of grass from Daniel Karsko’s front yard, news sources report. Detectives are currently conducting an investigation and may identify additional victims. Marino, 49, was booked into the Broward County Main Jail on charges of burglary, grand theft, and resisting arrest. He is being held on $6,500 bail bond. It is not yet known whether Marino has hired a defense lawyer.
According to reports, Broward County police officers arrested Marino in November 2012 and February 6, 2013 on charges similar to these latest charges. The details of those cases are not currently known; it is unclear whether they were related to the sod theft. Sources say residents in the Yellowstone neighborhood have been experiencing a number of property thefts, most of which include foliage such as like shrubbery and grass.
This latest incident occurred around 6:30 Tuesday morning at Karsko’s home in the 1100 block of Southwest 19th Street of Fort Lauderdale, sources indicate. Karsko reportedly witnessed Marino pulling up layers of grass from his front yard and loading them into a van. Karsko called police, who arrived and also reportedly witnessed Marino stealing the sod, reports say.
Detectives approached Marino, who allegedly attempted to drive off. After officers pulled him from his vehicle, Marino unsuccessfully attempted to flee on foot, sources say. After Marino was apprehended, detectives searched Marino’s van and reportedly located the stolen grass and a number of bushes and palm trees, reports say. Following his arrest, Marino reportedly admitted to stealing portions of Karsko’s lawn.
Marino was not the only South Florida resident arrested for grand theft this past week. Billy Jeff Simplice, a Treasure Coast high school student, was arrested Friday after he was accused of stealing another student’s phone, reports say. Simplice later allegedly tried to sell the phone via Facebook. He was booked into the St. Lucie County Jail on charges of dealing in stolen property and grand theft. It is unclear whether he qualified for bail or hired legal representation.
Reports say Simplice stole the cell phone from the victim’s locker. Once the victim discovered that his phone was missing, he reported the theft to the school’s resource officer, sources say. The victim reportedly suspected that Simplice was the culprit. To discover whether this was the case, the victim reportedly used his friend’s Facebook profile to send a message to Simplice. In the message, the victim inquired whether Simplice had any cellphones for sale, sources indicate. Simplice allegedly said that he had a phone for sale; the description matched the make and model of the stolen phone.
The victim arranged to buy the phone at a Shell gas station of Southwest Darwin Boulevard. The victim told the school’s resource officer about the deal, and the officer went in the victim’s place to confront Simplice. According to reports, Simplice spotted the officer near the gas station and fled the scene. The officer pursued and witnessed Simplice handing the phone to another student. The officer arrested that student and Simplice. Reports say the other student followed police directions, turned over the phone, and was not charged with a crime.