Release posted on 05-16-23 at 5:27 a.m
Today, St. Petersburg detectives arrested Joshua McCarty-Thomas, DOB 11/22/76) for stealing rare books and rare reptiles.
Detectives are currently serving a search warrant on McCarty-Thomas' home at 2435 10th St. S., St. Petersburg, and found two rare tortoises. One was alive in the yard and the other carcass was in the freezer. This scene is expected to be active for several hours. PIO Yolanda Fernandez is on the scene.
McCarty-Thomas faces charges for stealing the endangered Galapagos Tortoises from the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park in St. Augustine, FL on November 30, 2022. FWC officials verified the tortoises' chips as those stolen last November. The juvenile tortoises are each worth approximately $10,000. Once grown, these giant reptiles can reach 600 lbs. and live 150 years. St. Augustine Police is the charging agency in that case.
Also, McCarty-Thomas is charged in two commercial burglaries in St. Petersburg:
There is also a warrant for his arrest in the commercial burglary of a store in Ocala, where valuable comic books worth thousands of dollars were stolen. Other cases are pending.
St. Petersburg Police Media Relations - (727) 893-7550
YOLANDA FERNANDEZ - Public Information Officer