Red light camera helps police make arrest
MIAMI SPRINGS, Fla. (WSVN) -- Police have arrested a robbery suspect accused of jumping into a woman's car during a traffic light stop in Miami Springs. Officials are now crediting red light cameras in helping them find the suspect.
"We have red light cameras at five spots in Miami Springs," Miami Springs Officer Janice Simon said.
According to officials, on Sept. 15, 78-year-old Rosario Cardini and 91-year-old Josef Cardini were driving home after leaving the Miami Jai-Alai Casino. While they were stopped at a traffic light on South Royal Poinciana Boulevard and East Drive, 42-year-old Douglas Robert Littel walked up to the vehicle and got inside, Miami Springs Police said.
"From behind, they saw somebody flagging them down," Simon said.
He told the 78-year-old woman she had a flat tire right before reaching for her purse. Although the woman tried to hold on to her purse, Littel punched and slapped the victim's arms before running back to his car and driving away, according to police.
"The subject opened the unlocked rear door, entered, grabbed the female victim's purse, which was sitting in the center console," Simon said. "The victims tried to struggle with the subject, and he was hitting them and slapping their arms and hands, which they eventually let go."
Miami Springs Police detectives were able to identify Littel's vehicle thanks to the red light cameras at nearby intersections. The red light footage shows the victims' car being followed by a white van.
Police said they were able to identify Littel's car thanks to the vehicle's distinct markings shown in the video. He was arrested and charged Wednesday. "Based on what the victims said, they were coming from Miami Jai-Alai, they were on 36 Street," Simon said. "They took the red light cameras, and they searched through them."
(Copyright 2013 by Sunbeam Television Corp. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)