More than a dozen Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies were searching for two men who bailed from a stolen car–a 2019 Honda–at Riviera Estates Drive a little after 8 this evening.
The two men swam across a canal and were possibly armed. “The appearance by a deputy was that they saw them armed,” Sheriff Rick Staly, who was at the scene, said. “Until we find them, we don’t have that confirmed.”
The search, for two black men, took deputies through various areas of the R Section.
Flagler County Fire Flight, the county’s emergency helicopter, was called to fly over the scene and assist in the search.
“It was an LPR hit on US 1 of a vehicle stolen from Jacksonville,” the sheriff said of a license plate reader. (He had been on the way to Lowe’s on a personal errand when the stolen-car call came through. He changed course.) “When they saw a marked car, they took off before we could set up stop sticks, and they bailed out in the R Section. I have about 13, 14 deputies right now in a perimeter, Fire Flight, K-9, my director of Homeland Security happened to be out, he’s here, and myself. K-9 is running the tracks.”
License plate readers are located at certain intersections, scanning license plates and sending alerts to the sheriff’s office when a tag has been reported stolen.
“We’ve not put out an alert,” the sheriff said. “We have knocked on some doors and talked to some residents, and warned them. Obviously that wasn’t everyone.”
At 8:50 p.m., the search was called off. “We’re going to call it and try a different tactic,” the sheriff said, the thinking at the time being that the two men may have hidden in a residence, possibly with people they knew.