Road leads to jail for man on booze run in stolen vehicle
A jaunt in a stolen minivan to a liquor store to buy booze with a stolen credit card ended up putting an Allentown man on the road to jail.
Jose Enrique Aponte-Ortiz, 25, of the 200 block of North 10th Street, was sentenced in Montgomery County Court on Monday to 50 days to 23 months in the county jail after he pleaded guilty to charges of theft by unlawful taking and access device fraud in connection with a March 31, 2017, incident during which he stole one man’s vehicle and an-
other man’s wallet in Hatfield Township so he could drive to a liquor store to buy rum.
Under a plea agreement accepted by Judge William R. Carpenter, Aponte-Ortiz also must complete three years’ probation after he’s paroled.
The judge also ordered Aponte-Ortiz to pay $991 in restitution in connection with the case.
The investigation began about 1 p.m. when Hatfield Township police responded to Clemens Food Group on Clemens Road after one employee reported that his car keys, a watch and other items had been taken from his bag inside a locker room, and a second employee reported his car keys and wallet had been taken from his bag in the
One of the victims told police that after discovering his keys were missing, he went outside and found that his minivan was missing, according to an affidavit of probable cause.
A security officer told police that a male suspect had been at the business earlier that morning to fill out a job application and was later interviewed, but had not been offered a job, and was “acting suspicious” prior to the thefts and hanging around asking people for money, according to the criminal complaint.
Surveillance video showed the man entering the locker room and then exiting the business and walking toward the area where one victim’s minivan was parked, according to court documents.
Investigators looked at the job application and found the suspect, AponteOrtiz, had provided his
name, address and phone number, according to the criminal complaint.
During the investigation, one of the victims told police that his credit card had just been used at the Walmart and a liquor store at the Hilltown Crossings shopping center. Police went to the liquor store and looked at video surveillance footage of Aponte-Ortiz buying a $25 bottle of rum with the stolen credit card.
Aponte-Ortiz attempted to make another purchase of about $77 worth of liquor 15 minutes later but left the store after he was asked for identification, according to the arrest affidavit.
The following day Allentown police went to AponteOrtiz’s residence at the behest of Hatfield police and he provided a photo ID in his name that matched the suspect captured on video surveillance footage obtained during the investigation, court documents indicate.