Pasco County, Florida -- Pasco Sheriff's deputies are looking for the public's help locating over $170,000 worth of electronic devices ranging from MacBooks to iPods stolen from five county schools.
So far, deputies have arrested 19-year-old Alex Ortiz, a former student from Ridgewood High School, in connection with the crimes.
Ortiz was connected to a burglary at his almamater after five MacBooks and four iPods were found in his car during a traffic stop. Two of the MacBooks, and one of the iPods, were identified as those stolen from Ridgewood High on Feb. 27.
During a search of his home, two more MacBooks were found -- one of which had also been stolen from Ridgewood High. In an interview with detectives, Ortiz admitted to breaking into the school through a first floor window.
In that instance, investigators say Ortiz did not act alone and that he was with three others who have yet to be caught.Detectives say Ortiz is part of a theft ring, involving at least three others, that steals the devices and then sells them on social media sites.
To date, authorities say the following four schools have seen losses of over $164,000 in stolen property and over $1,400 in property damage.
• Ridgewood High School total losses $70,650
River Ridge High School also reported a similar type of burglary with a total loss of over $8,700 and an additional $3,200 in property damage.
Investigators are also asking parents to let them know if their children, or their friends, have obtained any new devices recently.