(Sarasota County) Four men from Ft. Lauderdale will make their first appearance before a judge Thursday morning for allegedly trying to break-in to a home with three children inside.
The incident happened off Palmer Boulevard, east of the interstate, in an upscale community.
The drama began when the mother drove her 16-year old to school while the three others, ranging in age from 14-9, waited back at the house.
"We got a call that some children had texted their mother that someone was trying to break in," said Wendy Rose, Public Information Officer for the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office.
"The mother told the children to run out the back door to a neighbors house so as they ran out the back doors, the suspects ran to a waiting vehicle and fled," Rose said.
And as the car began to speed down the street, the 14 year old used his new cell phone again. He took a picture of the getaway car's license plate.
Within minutes deputies stopped the car on the interstate and arrested four men, ages 19 to 24, all from Ft. Lauderdale and all in trouble before.
"One is on felony probation for armed robbery, another is a violent felony offender," Rose said.
Eric Snowed was disappointed to hear about the attempted break-in a few lawns away.
"Kinda makes you think about when you leave, your alarm on and that stuff," Snowed said.
That may be good advice for everyone, as law enforcement reports a rise in transient crime.
"We've had a pattern of people coming up from South Florida in rental vehicles and trying to commit crimes in this area," Rose said.
Luckily the drama at this house ended without incident--but it could have been a lot worse.
"Certainly no one you want in your home, especially with your children there," she said.