Suspects charged in two home invasions


Suspects charged in two home invasions


Date: May 2, 2009
by: Robin Roy | City Editor


Sarasota police arrested two suspects in the Friday night attack on an 82-year-old woman and her son in a home invasion.

The suspects were apprehended about 1 a.m. Saturday.

Christopher Sellars, 25, and James Stephens, 20, were being questioned about another home invasion attempt early Saturday morning in the Lido Beach area, when detectives determined the pair also was responsible for the Friday home invasion in the 700 block of South Shade Avenue, police said.

The two suspects allegedly broke into the home and confronted Marilynn Jones, who walks with a cane, and her son, Tony Jones. The victims said the invaders were carrying machine guns.

Police say Stephens hit the son in the head with a gun, causing a gash above his eye. The victims were then forced to lie down in their living room. They were bound with electrical cords, while Sellars and Stephens allegedly ransacked the home and collected several items on the dining room table.

The suspects then untied Tony Jones and forced him to put the items into his 1994 Ford Focus, police said.

Police said the suspects escaped in the car and abandoned it at 32nd Street and Leonard Reid Avenue.

The victims were not seriously hurt.

Detectives from the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office were notified of the arrest and were able to link the two supsects to a Thursday night home invasion on 53rd Street.

In that attack, two men broke into a home and beat and stabbed a man inside. They stole several items before dragging the man outside and driving off with him in his car.

That victim was treated and released from the hospital.

Sellars and Stephens have been charged with multiple counts of armed, home-invasion robbery, aggravated battery and grand theft auto, detectives said.Sarasota police arrested two suspects in the Friday night attack on an 82-year-old woman and her son in a home invasion.

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