County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Paul Hanna addressed the charges at a media briefing on Wednesday, May 17.
The 142-count indictment brings counts of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, grand theft of motor vehicles, breaking and entering and other charges against the 11 suspects, ranging in age from 18 years old to 22 years old:
- Makilin Wilson, 20
- Rasheed Roundtree, 21
- Kyer Allen, 19
- Dahmere Lymon, 19
- Willie Hicks, 22
- Ty’aun Williams, 20
- Theon Avery, 20
- Shaakir Maddox, 21
- Arthur Robinson, 21
- Laejuan Robinson, 18
- Cory Phillips, 18
The suspects are accused of breaking into 26 car dealerships across in 11 Ohio counties a total of 32 times between Nov. 2 and March 17, stealing 86 vehicles worth a combined about $5.1 million, O’Malley said.
“These 11 men operated a criminal organization that targeted multiple dealerships in 11 counties across Northeast Ohio,” O’Malley is quoted in a news release. “Their crime spree caused significant damage to the dealerships they hit, the people they affected, and the communities surrounding them. I would like to personally thank the great efforts of the 34 law enforcement agencies that took this group out of commission. They will be held responsible.”
Read the full indictment below:
In video shown by prosecutors Wednesday, the suspects in a Jan. 5 break-in at an Akron dealership can be seen heading directly to a sales office to find the cars’ key fobs. In a Jan. 18 break-in at an Amherst dealership, they’re seen breaking in through the service garage and later making off with multiple cars.
The frequency of the break-ins and the suspects’ coordination made it clear “these people are part of an organized crime ring,” Hanna said.
The alleged thieves targeted high-end luxury vehicles including a Porsche, several BMWs and a Jaguar.
“They would scope out the dealerships prior, then break in and steal the cars they preferred,” O’Malley said.
In the player below, see footage from two January 2023 break-ins at Northeast Ohio car dealerships:
Also stolen was a $110,000 pickup truck belonging to Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson, O’Malley confirmed Wednesday. Watson had left the vehicle at a Mercedes-Benz dealership in North Olmsted to be serviced, before it was stolen in an early morning break-in on Saturday, Jan. 14. It was later found in a ditch.
They’re also accused of stealing cars from residences.
They vehicles were then sold on the street. Some were used in violent crimes, including an assault on a police officer on Jan. 5 and a drive-by shooting on Feb. 12 — crimes included in this latest indictment.
Two of the 11 indicted suspects remain at-large, he said. Five of the suspects were arrested Wednesday and another four were already in custody.
The investigation remains ongoing. Authorities believe more than 120 cars were stolen in all, and they’re still trying to find dozens of them, O’Malley said.