A Lehigh Acres man was caught driving a stolen SUV into the Florida Keys Sunday morning, and led police on a high-speed chase before deputies used road spikes to pop his tires, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.
Guillermo Ledesma, 21, remained in county jail Monday afternoon on felony fleeing and eluding police, burglary and grand theft of an automobile charges. His bond information was not immediately available.
He also faces misdemeanor marijuana possession, drug equipment possession and loitering charges, according to the sheriff’s office.
Deputies received a report shortly before 5 a.m. that a stolen white General Motors Yukon from Lee County was likely in the Keys, said sheriff’s spokesman Adam Linhardt said. Sheriff’s Sgt. Orlando Alvarez spotted the car a few minutes later heading south on U.S. 1 in Key Largo.
He tried pulling over the driver, but the Yukon continued heading south, speeding at more than 100 mph, Linhardt said.
After several more attempts to get Ledesma to pull over, deputies put down road spikes in Islamorada, and he stopped the car at mile marker 83. But he didn’t surrender. He got out of the vehicle and ran away.
Deputies received a call about an hour later that a “suspicious person” was inside the Publix supermarket at mile marker 83.2, Linhardt said.
When police found him there, Ledesma had leaves stuck to his clothes and inside his shoes, according to sheriff’s office.
Ledesma told deputies someone had dropped him off at the store, but security video footage showed him walking there, Linhart said.
Deputies searched the area and found a backpack and the car key fob to the stolen Yukon, Linhardt said. They also found a Toyota in the area with its door ajar. Inside the car, it looked like someone sifted through items in the center console, and some items were left on the front seats, Linhardt said.
There was also one sandal in the car.
Police found a matching sandal in the backpack they found, along with a credit card with Ledesma’s name on it, Linhardt said. They also found a marijuana cigarette inside the Yukon, according to the sheriff’s office.