At 4:00pm on Wednesday afternoon, photos of four theft suspects were posted to the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page, accompanied by a request for the community’s assistance in identifying them. Immediately following the post, tips on the suspect’s identities rolled in – including a call from one of the suspects pictured. By 5:00pm that same evening, all four suspects were positively identified.
Kristoph Oakley (12/28/99), Raven Russell (8/30/91), Shaunae Best (8/4/96), and Naquan Guillory (3/1/97), were arrested Thursday on charges of Grand Theft after they met with Detectives and provided statements. The hover boards have not been located, but the train set was recovered.
This is not the first time the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office has used Facebook to identify a suspect. After a post requesting identification assistance, tipsters frequently send private messages or call in to dispatch. Tips are also received through Crime Stoppers, due to the tipster’s ability to remain anonymous and become eligible for a cash reward should the information lead to an arrest.
“Social media is a valuable tool for law enforcement,” states Katie Heck, CCSO’s Public Information Officer. “We are grateful our residents recognize the value in partnering with us in our efforts to quickly identify criminals and get them in custody.”
Crime prevention strategies and currents events are also highlighted on the agency’s platforms, which currently include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Nextdoor. “Education and communication are the keys to crime prevention, and social media helps us broaden our reach in the community,” states Heck. “The Sheriff’s goal is to arm our residents with knowledge they can use to prevent becoming victims of a crime.”
Links to social media platforms used by the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office are listed below.