POLICE BEAT: Mysterious van filled with fuel found abandoned at Placida boat ramp, CCSO asks all island residents to lock up their boats, tackle and other gear

May 17, 2021
By Marcy Shortuse

On Friday, May 7 Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office investigators and Charlotte County Fire were on scene at the Placida boat ramp investigating a van found abandoned, filled with barrels of fuel. 

According to reports the silver 2018 Ford Transit van parked at the boat ramp was discovered after a deputy noticed the Transit van and another vehicle possibly disabled on Placida Road just after midnight. As the deputy pulled over to assist, the van pulled off and was located in the boat ramp parking lot shortly after. Detectives confirmed that inside the van was roughly 20, 15-gallon drums full of fuel totaling 300 gallons. 

This is still an active and ongoing investigation. A search warrant was issued for the vehicle. 

The CCSO asks that community members in the area of Placida and the barrier islands report any suspicious activity, boats, or people that they observe.

Tarpon season is here and the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office encourages everyone to secure their fishing equipment when visiting the area. Please also secure garage storage closets as they have been targets in the past. We normally experience an increase in theft during the peak tarpon fishing months of May and June.