Man steals excavator, drives into Walmart

A man was arrested for allegedly driving an excavator into the Butler Plaza Walmart on Monday night.
A man was arrested for allegedly driving an excavator into the Butler Plaza Walmart on Monday night.
Courtesy of GPD
Jesse Charles Smith
Courtesy of GPD Jesse Charles Smith

Gainesville Police arrested a man who allegedly stole an excavator and took out power poles along with damaging a storage unit and the Butler Plaza Walmart on Monday night.

According to a Gainesville Police Department (GPD) social media post, officers responded to the Walmart on 2900 SW 42nd St. where the suspect drove a large excavator through a wall.

Officers also found that the suspect had taken out power poles and drove through a storage unit in the area of 2700 SW 40th Blvd.

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The incident was first reported around 8:07 p.m. from the area of 2600 SW 47th Street when officers received a call for an armed disturbance, according to GPD spokesperson Sgt. Joseph Castor in an email reply to Mainstreet. The excavator was stolen from a construction site off SW 47th Street.

Officers arrested Jesse Charles Smith, 47, of Trenton, on multiple counts of damage to property of $1000 or more, larceny grand theft, trespassing and resisting an officer. He is being held at the Alachua County Jail.

A man allegedly drove an excavator through a storage unit located in the area of 2700 SW 40th Blvd. on Monday night.
Courtesy of GPD A man allegedly drove an excavator through a storage unit located in the area of 2700 SW 40th Blvd. on Monday night.

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