A 38-year-old man ignored signs warning of “deadly poison” as he broke into an apartment building tented for pest fumigation and stole shoes from a man’s apartment, authorities said.
Adrian J. Anderson Jr. of St. Petersburg entered the apartment Monday through the front door and was caught on a surveillance camera, police said. The owner’s keys were left in the door while the fumigation tent covered the building allowing Anderson to go inside, according to court records.
Anderson put multiple pairs of the owner’s Jordan basketball shoes in his backpack and put on a pair, according to his arrest report. He noticed the surveillance camera and unplugged it while the owner – who had watched the crime unfold – was already on the phone with police, police said.
A police officer spotted Anderson outside a fast food restaurant and tried to confront him, but Anderson ran away. The officer chased him and eventually caught and arrested him, police said.
At the time of arrest, Anderson was wearing the basketball shoes and a backpack with two more pairs inside valued at $750. He also has electronics and coins that were not the apartment owner’s, according to court records.
The officer was unable to verify whether other apartments were burglarized because the building was tented.
Entering a tented building is dangerous because the harmful chemicals are colorless and odorless and can overwhelm a person, said Randy Riesen of Tent Fumigation Specialists in Orlando.
“It will kill you,” he said. “There’s no antidote if you get enough of it.”
Anderson could not be reached for comment. He was in the Alachua County Jail on a $37,000 bond, where the sheriff’s office does not permit detainees to speak with news organizations without the signed consent of a defense lawyer and a senior jail official.
He has a lengthy criminal record with 18 felony adjudications with 16 involving property and one involving drugs, and he was released from jail for cocaine possession Feb. 1. He also has six misdemeanor adjudications with four involving drugs, one involving drugs and one violent.
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