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Man arrested for looting Irma evacuee's home in Lake Park, PBSO says

Posted at 5:42 PM, Nov 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-03 04:17:04-04

A Lake Park man that evacuated for Hurricane Irma returned to find his home burglarized and several items stolen, according to a Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office report.

PBSO deputies arrested Justin Cantrell, 27, on Nov. 1 after they say an investigation led them to the victim’s neighbor.

The victim says his mother went to check on the house on the 9200 block of Matso Dr. on Sept. 11 and noticed someone broke a window to open the back door and burglarize the home. Several computers and televisions worth around $4,000 had been stolen.

On Oct. 20, agents searched the next door neighbor’s home for narcotics in an unrelated heroin case. Deputies found several computers matching the description the victim reported stolen during the burglary, the report states.

A neighbor told detectives she was sitting with her husband outside on Sept. 10 and saw Cantrell going back and forth from the victim’s home to his house carrying items. 

Cantrell claimed he stayed at a house in Jupiter Farms during the hurricane and could not have stolen the items. The detective reportedly found Cantrell pawned the items two days after the burglary.

Cantrell is charged with burglary and grand theft during a state of emergency.