Manatee County Sheriff's Office detectives arrested a 2008 Braden River High School graduate in connection with 11 East County home burglaries.
According to sheriff's office reports, the COPS North detail began daytime surveillance on Justin Lizardi, 20. At about 2:40 p.m., Lizardi was observed leaving his residence, at the 9000 block of Willow Brook Circle in Heritage Harbor. Lizardi was riding a bicycle and carrying a backpack. The surveillance team began following Lizardi and observed him casing houses, the report said.
Lizardi went to 9109 Brookfield Terrace and began to walk around the house. A pool-cleaning company also arrived at that location. Lizardi quickly left and went across the street to 9114 Brookfield Terrace. Lizardi walked around the rear of the residence, picked up a brick paver and entering the pool cage. Lizardi then made several attempts to break the window in the back door window and could not gain access, the report said.
Lizardi then went to 9114 Brookfield Terrace and walked around to the rear of the residence, opened an unlocked rear slider and went inside. After a few minutes, Lizardi left the residence and started to ride away on his bike.
Deputies release a K-9 and apprehended Lizardi. The deputies searched his backpack and found several jewelry boxes and a bottle of prescription medication.
Post-Miranda, Lizardi admitted to a total of 11 residential burglaries, including one in River Club where $36,000 in jewelry was taken.