A suspect in a March theft was arrested yesterday during a sting operation, organized after the stolen items were observed posted for sale on Facebook. Eric John Marquis (9/5/77), was arrested on charges of Grand Theft and Dealing in Stolen Property after he arrived to complete the transaction with the undercover deputy.
The theft occurred on March 18th, when the victim parked his motorcycle near the front door of Walmart (375 Kings Highway), leaving his Bluetooth equipped helmet on the bike. Upon exiting the store, the helmet was gone. Utilizing surveillance footage, suspect Eric Marquis was identified by several deputies based on prior interactions. Marquis, who identifies as homeless, was unable to be located.
On April 23rd, Detectives observed that Eric Marquis was selling a Bluetooth helmet set on Facebook. The victim was contacted and he identified the posted set as his stolen property. The Detective made arrangements to purchase the set from Eric Marquis, meeting on April 25th at Pizza Hut (3068 Tamiami Trail). Eric Marquis was arrested at the time of the meeting. He was transported to the Charlotte County Jail.
The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office encourages you to be safe when conducting business transactions resulting from online commerce. In addition to the risk of purchasing stolen property, the seller or buyer may have criminal intentions for the meetings, such as stealing your money or merchandise.
The Sheriff’s Office has designated areas at every District Office as E-Commerce Exchange Safe Zones for customers meeting with individuals to transact business resulting from online deals. Using these locations to conduct transactions is strongly encouraged to decrease the opportunity for criminal activity.
A complete list of our safe zones can be found in an earlier blog post by clicking here.