The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office arrested two people after they fled from deputies responding to a retail theft at Home Depot in Sarasota.
On Monday around 4:30 p.m., deputies were alerted by loss prevention personnel to Michael Barone, DOB 03/08/84, concealing nearly $400 worth of merchandise in a cart at the Cattlemen Home Depot location. When Barone realized he was being monitored, he abandoned the merchandise inside the store and fled on foot to a burgundy SUV driven by Iris Rivera, DOB 05/08/80. As deputies approached the duo, Rivera accelerated away striking one deputy in the leg with her vehicle. Additional deputies attempted to conduct a traffic stop on the southbound I-75 on-ramp, however Rivera continued to flee nearly colliding with a patrol car. Barone took over driving and reached dangerous speeds. In an abundance of caution for public safety, deputies canceled the pursuit. The agency’s Aviation Unit maintained visual contact while updating ground units as the vehicle eventually exited the highway onto River Road. The vehicle continued to drive recklessly into a North Port neighborhood where it lost control and struck a house on Gatun Street. Barone fled again on foot, and Rivera was taken into custody from the SUV. No serious injuries or structural damage were reported. On Tuesday afternoon, deputies arrested Barone without further incident.
Barone, of 8816 Culebra Avenue in North Port, is charged with Second Degree Petit Theft, Resisting Arrest During Recovery of Property, Resisting Arrest without Violence, and Fleeing to Elude. Rivera, also of 8816 Culebra Avenue in North Port, is charged with Aggravated Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer, Aggravated Assault on a Law Enforcement Officer, Fleeing to Elude and Possession of a Controlled Substance. Both Barone and Rivera remain in custody today without bond.