March 18, 2016
The Levy County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division arrested Matthew John Bennett (4-25-83) on March 15, 2016, who was a suspect in multiple residential burglaries in the Chiefland area just west of the City Limits. Victims reported jewelry and other valuables were taken.
Bennett was developed as a person of interest after deputies responded to a residential burglary scene at a home located on NW 64 Terrace on March 9th. Crime Scene Investigators located unique foot print impressions near the home and collected blood from a broken window at the point of entry. Investigators learned Bennett had recently been released from the Florida Department of Corrections and had registered an address with his probation officer which is near the victim’s home. Bennett wears a prosthetic leg which gave explanation to the unique foot print impressions discovered at this scene.
Before investigators could positively link Bennett to this crime, he struck again. LCSO responded to a burglary report on NW 115 Street, which is within walking distance of Bennett’s home. This homeowner discovered his house had been burglarized when he returned home for lunch. The victim reported jewelry and other valuables had been taken.
Local business cooperation led to these cases being solved. Bennett and a female accomplice sold the recently stolen jewelry to a local business. The business owner contacted LCSO to report this transaction. Investigators located Bennett and the female walking away from the business, and were able to follow them back to his home.
Investigators Tom Martin and Zeb Richburg contacted Bennett and arrested him. They were able to recover jewelry and other merchandise positively linking Bennett to three recently reported burglaries. The majority of the recovered property has been identified by the owners and returned. However, this investigation is still ongoing and Bennett is suspect in other local crimes.
Bennett is being held at the Levy County Detention Facility where he is charged with burglary and grand theft. His bond has been set at $260,000.