Serial Treasure Coast burglary suspect arrested

Posted at 11:20 AM, Mar 25, 2016

Port St. Lucie police have announced the arrest of 52-year-old Gerles William Terry for a series of business burglaries along the Treasure Coast.

Police say the primary targets were Chinese restaurants, hair and nail salons, florists and gas stations.

Officers say Pride Liquor is Terry's most recent target. They say Terry smashed open the door grabbing more than a $100 in cash.

Police say Terry is the primary suspect in 21 burglaries. Officers say he used crowbars, rocks, and even his own car to smash doors and windows.

Seven incidents took place in Port St. Lucie, seven in Martin County, three in St. Lucie County, two in Indian River County and one each in Stuart and Sebastian, according to police.

One of those incidents happened at the Chevron Gas Station in Port Saint Lucie where the suspect drove his car through the door.

"Basically smashed out the door," says Dylan Bard at Chevron.

Investigators say a Crime Stoppers tip led them to Terry's home where they found an unregistered car and clothing consistent with surveillance footage.

"21 business burglaries is a pretty significant case and we're all happy that it came to a successful conclusion, but there's a lot of work left to do, but we're happy to have Mr. Terry in custody right now," says Port Saint Lucie Assistant Chief Richard Del Toro.

Del Toro says Terry had a drug problem which could be a possible motive behind the burglaries.

"Pretty brazen. But people with substance abuse problems are going to do what they got to do to make sure that they get the drugs," says Del Toro.

Officers say the investigation is ongoing and there could be another suspect involved.