Polk County Man, 36, who was arrested after he ‘took his 8-year-old son on a multi-day crime spree including burglary and car theft
Ernest McKnight III, 36, of Lake Wales was arrested Thursday by County sheriffs and charged with several crimes including burglary and auto theft
McKnight allegedly stole a surveyor’s idling car from a construction site and five days later was spotted rummaging through another car – hours before he swiped an Amazon package
He allegedly told detectives he brought his son along because he ‘was trying to toughen him up… I don’t want him to be soft’
Police ridiculed him on social media, posting a image of him captioned ‘Ernest Goes to Jail’ in a reference to the 1990 comedy film
A Florida father has been arrested by police after he took his 8-year-old son along on a crime spree. Ernest McKnight III told detectives he did it because he didn’t want the boy to be ‘soft’, police say.
McKnight, 36, was arrested Thursday by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and charged with a string of crimes, including burglary, automobile theft, and three counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
McKnight who has flirted with the law most of his life, allegedly took his son, a minor, along with him while he carried out the crimes: ‘I was trying to toughen him up… I don’t want him to be soft,’ McKnight allegedly told detectives.
McKnight allegedly began his spree in his home town of Lake Wales on November 7, when he stole a red Hyundai that was idling as its owner was surveying a nearby construction site.
Five days later, around 7 a.m., a man who had parked his Chevrolet HHR to walk his dog south of Lake Ashton allegedly spotted McKnight rummaging around in the vehicle.
McKnight fled in the stolen red Hyundai, police said.
McKnight, was arrested Thursday after police aircraft spotted the red Hyundai behind a home near Lake Rosalie.
Lake Wales Police hit McKnight with additional charges of eluding law enforcement, driving with a suspended or revoked license, and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
The Polk County Sheriff’s Office ridiculed McKnight on Friday, posting to Facebook a photo collage with his mugshot and a red Hyundai under the title of the 1990 comedy film ‘Ernest Goes to Jail.’
An Amazon package had a text bubble reading ‘Take Me, Ernest.’
Polk County Sheriff’s Office ridiculed McKnight following his arrest, photoshopping him into a collage with a red Hyundai, an Amazon package, and the title of the 1990 Jim Varney comedy ‘Ernest Goes to Jail’.
On Friday a judge ordered McKnight, a career criminal, to be held in Polk County Jail on $22,000 bond.