Resident and police officer team up to foil burglary

Resident and police officer team up to foil burglary

Pictured (l-r) are Miami-Dade Police Lt. Franklin E. Roig, Councilmember Sue Ellen Loyzelle, Officer Fleites’ son, Miami-Dade Police Officer Deborah Fleites, George Fraga and his family, Mayor Peggy R. Bell, Councilmember Roger Coriat and Vice Mayor Ernest N. Sochin.

Cutler Bay resident George Fraga and Miami-Dade Police Officer Deborah Fleites were recognized at the June 17 town council meeting for their collaborative role in apprehending a burglary suspect.

Fraga, owner and operator of George’s Lawn Service, observed an individual loitering and prowling in the area where he was performing landscaping duties on Wednesday, Mar. 11. He immediately dialed 911 to report the individual and his suspicious activities and remained on the telephone with the town’s police complaint officer to provide real time information.

Officer Deborah Fleites from the town’s Policing Unit was just blocks away at the time of the call and immediately responded to the burglary in progress.

Fleites, who is the Officer of the Quarter Award Winner, immediately made contact with Fraga upon arriving at the scene. He told her he had just seen a white male subject pry open the front door of the residence located in the 9800 block of SW 222nd Street. Officer Fleites, fearing that the home was occupied, entered it without hesitation or concern for her own personal safety and began a search for the burglar inside the residence.

She discovered him hiding in the master bedroom closet. Officer Fleites took the subject into custody and further investigation revealed he was in possession of jewelry belonging to a resident or residents of the house.

“This is the very best example of our citizens working with our police to stop crime in Cutler Bay,” said Cutler Bay Mayor Peggy Bell. “We are most grateful to both Mr. Fraga and Officer Fleites for their bravery and quick action in stopping a crime in progress.”

The award proclamation read in part:

“The collaborative efforts of Mr. Fraga and Officer Fleites resulted in the Policing Unit’s immediate response and sound tactics, concluding in the apprehension and arrest of a felon. The dedication and tenacity demonstrated in this alliance is a credit to both the Department and the community in which they serve. It is with great pleasure that the Mayor and Town Council commend Mr. Fraga and Officer Fleites for a job well done and for contributing to the Town’s mission of being an excellent place to live, work and play.”

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