Palm Coast, FL - It didn't take long for a new piece of technology to pay off for the Flagler County Sheriff's Office.
On the first day all FCSO patrol units were equipped with 'Rapid ID' devices (pictured below this article), a deputy uses it to arrest two Volusia County residents for stealing tools from at least two Home Depot stores in the Volusia-Flagler area.
55-year-old John R. Butler III (left) of Daytona Beach and 39-year-old Amanda L. Butler (right) of Holly Hill were booked at Flagler County Jail Tuesday (August 21st) on numerous charges. In John's case, it's felony grand theft and violating probation on a felony arson charge, while Amanda is facing felony grand theft and two misdemeanors: giving a false name to law enforcement and driving with a suspended/revoked license.
FCSO spokesperson Anna Hackett says it all started earlier that day when a repo agent near the Palm Coast Home Depot spotted the Butlers leaving without paying for a drill set and reported it to FCSO.
"Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies conducted a traffic stop on the suspect's car based on the information provided," Hackett noted. "The driver initially provided a false name and had no identification."
That's when the 'Rapid ID' scanner was used, helping to identify the driver as Amanda, per Hackett.
"Rapid ID mobile devices scan a person’s fingerprint and transmit it directly to the State Automated Fingerprint Identification System," Hackett noted. "Results are returned immediately to the deputy in the field, including any criminal history the person may have."
Thanks to the scanner, investigators found out that Amanda didn't have a valid driver's license and that John was supposed to be at his Daytona Beach home because he was under house arrest as part of his probation.
Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly says it's not unusual to have suspect give deputies and officers fake names while being detained and he expects that Rapid ID devices will help FCSO identify people quicker in the streets.
"We used drug seized forfeiture monies to equip deputies with this technology for cases exactly like this," Staly noted. "The taxpayers did not pay a dime for this technology."
While searching the car the Butlers were in afterward, FCSO found an empty drill set box that was originally taken from the Home Depot on West International Speedway Boulevard in Daytona Beach.
John is held without bond at the Flagler County Jail, while Amanda is under $6,500 bond.
FCSO did not clarify what relationship the Butlers may have to one another.