A fleeing burglary suspect went for a brief drive following the crime the morning of Wednesday, Sept. 28, but was soon apprehended. Roswell Police Department officers took into custody Raymond L. Tapia, 59, of Roswell, who allegedly fled the scene of a burglary about 9 a.m. in the 2700 block of Gaye Drive in the northwest part of the city.
A neighbor heard alarms sounding at the house being burglarized. He checked on the house and then started to follow the suspect as the suspect drove off. There was no one in the burglarized house at the time. The neighbor called police and continued to follow the suspect’s vehicle for a short time, relaying its location to a police dispatcher. Officers then followed the suspect’s vehicle at a distance to maintain sight of it as it drove through several areas of town, but did not actively pursue it as it was driving at a high rate of speed, making unsafe an actual pursuit within the city.
RPD apprehended Tapia (pictured) in the south part of the city about 9:20 a.m. when he pulled into an alley off South Main Street north of Ballard Street and stopped the vehicle near his residence. He is charged with burglary and aggravated fleeing of law enforcement, as well as multiple traffic offenses.
It was the second time in three days a crime suspect fleeing in a vehicle was quickly stopped and apprehended by RPD officers.
On Monday, Sept. 26, at about 4:20 p.m., a shoplifting suspect fled from Albertson’s Market in the 1100 block of South Main Street and while hurriedly backing out of a parking space, his vehicle knocked over a store employee who had pursued him out of the store. The employee was not seriously injured.
An officer spotted the suspect’s vehicle nearby, but the driver initially would not stop when the officer tried to pull him over. The driver did stop the vehicle within a couple minutes. Ricardo Lopez Jr., 35, of Roswell, was arrested. His charges include aggravated battery, shoplifting, reckless driving, failure to give immediate notice of accident, and failure to give information/render aid.