PACE, Fla. (WALA) - Residents who live in the Wooden Springs neighborhood said it's usually fairly quiet.
Neighbors know one another and keep an eye out for each other.
But officials said thieves have been hard at work burglarizing vehicles throughout neighborhoods in both Santa Rosa and Escambia counties.
Three suspects in a 'vehicle burglary ring' are responsible for more than 50 burglaries of vehicles and homes and have been arrested, according to the Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Department.
All three suspects are currently in the Escambia County Jail, officials said on Monday, March 18. Kevin Randall Bell, 26, Charles Dylan Williams, 19 and Richard Kevin Craig, 21 are charged in what authorities called a multi-jurisdictional investigation.
The SRCSO said reports of several victims who found their cars ransacked in the Woodbine Springs and Autumn Run North subdivisions in Pace came in at the end of January, which led to the start of the investigation.
Residents in the Woodbine Springs neighborhood said they were surprised by the news of break-ins.
"It concerns me a lot because we have a lot of young kids in the neighborhood and you don't expect that in this community in this area and especially this neighborhood," Chris Cutchens said.
"It's a pretty quiet subdivision, I didn't lock my car until I heard about this," Eric Jenson said.
Officials said the burglaries started in January when thieves ransacked cars and took anything they could put their hands on.
"Items that were taken were GPS, anything that was left out, cell phones and one instance there was actually a gun stolen from the car as well," said SRCSO spokesmen Rich Aloy.
We're told credit cards were used to buy gas, fast food and to shop at Walmart.
Authorities said investigators put the pieces of the puzzle together, which led them to the suspects and the recovery of the stolen items.
The Escambia County Sheriff's Department said the ring was responsible for a total of 37 cases, and the burglaries in Santa Rosa County totaled 18 incidents. They are being held in Escambia for the crimes committed in that jurisdiction.
The group, who officials said are from Pensacola, chose subdivisions in Santa Rosa County in areas with which they were familiar.
Santa Rosa County investigators said they have issued a total of 52 charges for which warrants against the group. Extradition is expected back to Santa Rosa County after they face charges in Escambia County.
Deputies said the suspects also attempted to steal a vehicle. We're told most of the items have been returned to their owners including the stolen firearm.
Deputies said the suspects confessed to multiple burglaries.
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