LAKE CITY, S.C. (WBTW) — At least a half-dozen people are facing charges connected to a two-week-long series of more than a dozen vehicle break-ins and thefts in the Lake City area, according to the Florence County Sheriff’s Office.

Authorities have identified two suspects in the thefts, which deputies said took place between July 23 and Aug. 6. They are:

  • Eric Antonio Chavez, 20, of Scranton, who has been charged with three counts of breaking into vehicles, criminal conspiracy, grand larceny, unlawful carry of a pistol, second-degree burglary, possession of a stolen pistol and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
  • Rodrigo Lashawn Lee Taylor, 17, of Lake City, who has been charged as an adult with second-degree burglary.

Chavez was taken to the Florence County Detention Center to await a bond hearing. Taylor was denied bond and taken to the detention center.

Four other juveniles have also been charged with multiple offenses, including breaking into vehicles and grand larcenty, deputies said. They were detained by Lake City police and taken to the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice.

“These individuals, either collectively or individually, are responsible for at least 14 motor-vehicle break ins,” Major Patrick Miles of the Lake City Police Department said in a news release. “Our department has been working diligently with the Sheriff’s Office to identify and arrest the individuals responsible.”

Florence County Sheriff TJ Joye said the arrests were a result of teamwork between several agencies.

“This is a great example of law enforcement agencies working together toward a common goal,” he said. “We would also like to thank the Kingstree Police Department and the Williamsburg County Sheriff’s Office for their cooperation and assistance.”

The investigation is continuing and more arrests are possible, Joye’s office said. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Florence County Sheriff’s Office at 843-665-2121, ext. 80166, the Lake City Police Department at 843-374-5411 or Crime Stoppers of the Pee Dee at 1-888-CRIME-SC. 

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Dennis Bright is a digital producer at News13. Dennis is a West Virginia native and graduate of Marshall University. He has won copyediting and journalism awards in West Virginia and Ohio. Follow Dennis on Twitter and read more of his work here.