Ormond Beach, FL – An officer with Volusia County Beach Safety is under arrest for breaking into a vehicle outside an Ormond Beach restaurant, stealing a beach umbrella and $170 in cash.
31-year-old Anthony M. Contino admitted to the crime and helped an Ormond Beach Police Department detective find those stolen items just before he was charged with burglarizing a vehicle and petit theft, according to his arrest report.
OBPD Officer Keith Walker says it all started around 11 o’clock last night outside the Pirana Grille on 241 North U.S. 1 in Ormond Beach.
“Officers met the victim on scene, who stated that as she was leaving the Pirana Grille, she noticed her car alarm was sounding,” Walker stated. “The victim then observed an unknown subject inside her vehicle and confronted him.”
That man left the 26-year-old woman’s vehicle and took off in a Nissan Frontier waiting nearby, but not before she wrote the tag number down, per Walker.
“The Nissan Frontier had difficulty starting, which provided the victim enough time to write down the tag,” Walker added. “The vehicle eventually started and left the area northbound on U.S.1 in a reckless manner.”
OBPD says the tag number she wrote down showed that it was a Nissan Frontier registered to Contino. That’s when an officer drove to his home, finding it parked outside with the vehicle hood still hot as if it had just been driven.
“Officers made contact with Contino’s girlfriend, who stated that Contino took her car to go hang out with his brother because his vehicle was having issues,” Walker noted. “Officers were able to contact Contino by phone and requested to meet with him.”
Police were able to recover security video from the restaurant showing Cortino entering the woman’s 2014 Ford Escape through the rear hatch around 15 minutes before she called 911 for help. The restaurant’s owner also confirmed to OBPD that the man in the vehicle was Contino after he saw the footage, per the report.
VCBS administrators were notified of the situation by OBPD and Contino was placed on administrative leave pending the result of an internal investigation.
Contino has been booked at Volusia County Jail, but his mugshot was not released because Florida law allows the mugshots of law enforcement officers charged with a crime to remain hidden.