Panama City residents face grand theft charges in Charlotte County

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Alexis Mora-Reyes (left) and Lilibeth Martinez (Credit: CCSO booking photos)

Two Panama City residents are facing charges in Charlotte County after deputies say they found them with drugs in a stolen vehicle.

The sheriff’s office says the pair were found early Wednesday in a car parked “extremely close” to a Ford F-350 tow truck at the Hampton Inn on Sandhill Boulevard in Port Charlotte.

“Due to the suspicious behavior and the close proximity to a vehicle frequently targeted and used in the commission of other vehicle thefts, deputies proceeded to make contact with the driver,” CCSO said in a release.

The driver was identified as Lilibeth Martinez and the passenger was identified as Alexis Mora-Reyes.

Martinez gave deputies a Florida ID card and it was found that her driver’s license had been suspended. Mora-Reyes was found to be on felony probation due to felony driving charges, according to the sheriff’s office.

Martinez was placed under arrest for driving with a suspended license. Deputies also found a glass pipe with methamphetamine residue inside her bra.

The Honda Accord driven by Martinez was bearing a temporary tag out of Texas. When deputies went to locate the VIN on the windshield, it was covered by a hotel key card. Martinez was asked if they could view the VIN located inside the door of the vehicle and it was found to be scratched off and missing, with the paint damaged down to the frame. Deputies removed the card from the inside of the windshield and ran the VIN, discovering the vehicle has been stolen out of Miramar.

Martinez and Mora-Reyes agreed to a search of their hotel room where detectives located several tractor keys and other items utilized in the theft of vehicles.

Mora-Reyes, 34, faces charges of grand theft of a motor vehicle and violation of probation or community control.

Martinez, 35, faces charges of grand theft of a motor vehicle, possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, possession or use of drug paraphernalia and introduction of contraband into a county detention facility.

Mora-Reyes is being held without bond while Martinez has since bonded out.

“There have been many reports of vehicle thefts throughout the state of Florida to include tractors, boats and Ford trucks. Additional investigations are active including both Mora-Reyes and Martinez,” the sheriff’s office said.

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.