Sheriff Darren Campbell said: On Sunday December 17, 2017 the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office received reports of several breaking and entering to motor vehicles at public parking areas along Hwy 150 west of Mooresville. A second rash of vehicle breaking and entering’s was reported on Sunday December 31 in the same area.
Criminal detectives were able to establish a pattern based off witness interviews and other evidence. Evidence indicated detectives were likely looking for the same suspect.
Early on in the investigation, evidence was generated which lead to an Iredell County detectives to draw warrants on Marquez Antonio Wright for One count of Felony Breaking and Entering a Motor Vehicle, but he was suspected of others. The suspect had no known address and attempts to locate him had been unsuccessful.
Based on the pattern and evidence, the suspect was suspected of being responsible for all the breaking and entering cases. In a proactive attempt, detectives organized a surveillance operation to catch the suspect before he could commit other crimes.
Detectives believed the suspect would likely strike again at an event which was being held on Sunday January 7, 2018. In the days leading up to the event detectives began altering schedules and planning to have sufficient personnel in place to identify and capture the suspect if he came back to the area.
On Sunday January 7, 2018, detectives of the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division (CID) along with deputies with the Aggressive Criminal Enforcement (ACE) Team along with undercover narcotics detectives, conducted a surveillance operation in the area of local boat accesses and parking lots off of Highway 150 near the Catawba County Line.
During these thefts, the suspect would usually break a window of the vehicle and go through it taking anything of value. In several instances, firearms and cash were stolen.
During this surveillance operation the suspect, Marquez Antonio Wright, was seen by detectives riding through an access area. Wright was kept under surveillance and was seen leaving one location and driving to another. It appeared to the surveillance team Wright was casing the area looking for potential targets.
Detectives and deputies after seeing his behavior and identifying him as the person they already had outstanding warrants on, moved in and arrested him before he could commit any new crimes.
Marquez Antonio Wright was taken into custody and transported to the Iredell County Detention Center where he was served with 28 felony warrants from Iredell, Gaston and Mecklenburg Counties. Wright’s vehicle was seized and is being processed for evidence which detective believe could link him to even more crimes in Iredell and surrounding counties.
In addition to the outstanding charges from the other counties, Wright was served with the following charges by the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office; Nine Felony counts of Breaking and Entering a Motor Vehicle, Five Felony counts of Larceny of Firearm, One count of Felony Larceny and Three Misdemeanor Larcenies. These charges stem from the incidents which occurred on December 17 and December 31 2017.
Marquez Antonio Wright was placed under a $333,500.00 secured bond. This investigation is still on going and additional charges are expected in connection with other vehicle breaking and entering cases which occurred in the area. Wright has multiple arrests include Obtaining Property by False Pretense, Felony Breaking and Entering and drug offences.