Authorities told on Sunday that 2 teenage Kentucky sweethearts, suspected in a crime spree of stolen vehicles and pilfered checks all over the U.S. South, have been arrested in Florida.
On Sunday, 18-year-old Dalton Hayes and his 13-year-old girlfriend, Cheyenne Phillips, were taken into custody without incident around 12:10 a.m. in Panama City Beach, according to the authorities in both states. The 2 had escaped from the police in many states while raising concern about their increasingly bold behavior.
Norman Chaffins, the sheriff of Grayson County, Kentucky, talked about where the teens live saying, “I spoke to Dalton and he was very scared, and he wanted to come home. He wanted me to come bring him home”. Chaffins also told that the teens were getting by on some amount of money they found in a truck stolen in Georgia.
U.S. Marshal’s Service and Panama City Beach Police found Hayes and Phillips asleep in a 2001 Toyota Tundra that was stolen in Georgia, according to the authorities. Officers surrounded the vehicle and arrested both.
The Associated Press was told by Chaffins that the teens should be sent back to Kentucky by the end of the week.
The 2 teens will face the same charges including burglary, theft, criminal trespassing and criminal mischief in Kentucky, told Chaffins. Phillips will face charges in juvenile court due to the reason that she is a minor.
The Bay County jail records show that Hayes was held Sunday on a charge of custodial interference. He is summoned to court on Monday at 8:30 a.m.
According to a DCF spokeswoman DaMonica Rivas, Florida’s Department of Children & Families were called to help Panama City Beach Police, but Phillips was not in the state’s custody.
Rivas added, “The juvenile has been taken to a safe location until arrangements with the family are made”.
According to Chaffins, he is now stress-free because the crime spree ended peacefully. If the couple had not been found asleep and surrounded, they may have escaped again.
“I think me and the family and many other law enforcement agencies were not getting a good feeling about how this was going to turn out” added Chaffins.
Hayes and Phillips started their run from the law and their families earlier this month when they disappeared from their small hometown in western Kentucky.
Tammy Martin, who is the mother of Hayes, had urged her son and his companion to surrender and “face the consequences”.
Martin told that the couple had been dating for almost 3 months. The girl told the family, including Hayes, that she is 19-year-old which everyone believed. Martin said that Cheyenne “would go in and write checks, and she would come out with cigarettes and stuff, so I didn’t have any reason not to believe she wasn’t 19 because normally you can’t buy cigarettes when you’re 13 years old”. She also told that by the time her son came to now that she was only 13, “he was already done in love with her”.
Grayson County court records show that when he hit the road, Hayes was running away from trouble back home. He faces burglary and theft charges in his home county, arising from an arrest in the year 2014.
His mother told that he has decided to be at the local judicial center on 5th of January to know if a grand jury had indicted him on the charges. His case did not come up but by that time the teens were gone.
According to Chaffins, the couple’s behavior had become “increasingly brazen and dangerous”.
They both succeeded twice in escaping from the law officers in Kentucky. They crashed the first truck they stole and hid it in the woods. After that they stole another truck nearby.
They were seen at a Wal-Mart in South Carolina once, where the teens are thought to have passed 2 stolen checks, according to Manning, South Carolina, Police Chief Blair Shaffer.
According to the authorities, the couple then made their way to Georgia and stole a pickup truck from the driveway of a man’s home which was almost 30 miles (50 kilometers) southeast of Atlanta.
Henry County police Lt. Joey Smith said that the homeowner told that he kept 2 handguns inside the vehicle that were stolen.
News Source: www.ABCNews.com