When it comes to petty theft, the headline “Man Steals Big Screen TV” doesn’t seem too outlandish. But when you combine that with an attempt to make a getaway in a stolen SUV — that’s still in the dealership showroom — it becomes one of the craziest stories of the week.
The Ocala Star-Banner reported that Vantice L. Beshears, 46 entered Honda of Ocala, a used car dealership in Florida. There, he reportedly took two large screen television sets and put them inside a black 2014 Toyota 4-Runner that was on the showroom floor. He then got into the driver’s seat, started the SUV, and attempted to escape — driving through the double glass doors and into another vehicle on the street.
How he was able to do all this without anyone at the dealership noticing or trying to stop him remains a mystery. However, shortly after Beshears attempted to make his escape, Ocala Police Department Officer Ashley Stinehour was called to the scene where she found the wrecked Toyota parked outside a nearby subdivision. The officer saw Beshears walking on the opposite side of the entrance and called out to him.
At first, Beshears ignored Stinehour, but then walked over to her. Beshears, who appeared intoxicated and had a bottle of Aleve in his hand, told the officer he was visiting a friend, but could not give a name or address, according to an OPD report.
Stinehour, joined by other officers, discovered there were warrants from Marion and Lake counties for Beshears’ arrest and he was taken into custody. He was first taken to a hospital for an evaluation but became aggressive and was taken instead to the jail.
The report states that Beshears claimed to have no memory of the incident, but police found several items tying him to the TV and car thefts; Beshears did admit to detectives that he “has a problem with methamphetamine and pills.”
Beshears now faces six charges, including grand theft over $20,000 and commercial burglary. He remained at the Marion County Jail on Friday, with his bond totaling $23,500.