ITALY — The Italy Police Department is seeking help from the public on the whereabouts of Devonta Simmons.
Italy police officers attempted to serve a warrant to Simmons at the residence he was staying at on Travis Street when he fled. Simmons is wanted in connection with 10 or more vehicle burglaries that have occurred since January, police said.
“We attempted to make contact with him. He fled the house through the back door and went across State Highway 34 into a wooded area where officers pursued him. They were unable to apprehend him due to the distance between the officer and the suspect,” Interim Italy Police Chief Cameron Beckham said. “Since January, we have had a rash of burglaries and citizens are starting to become more aware of their surroundings. He has been seen by witnesses who have placed him in the area. One of the residents put up a camera system and was caught on camera.”
Beckham said Simmons has allegedly been checking the doors of vehicles parked in driveways of residences to see if they are unlocked. He then allegedly rummaged though the vehicle’s contents and took items of value. Some of the streets where vehicle burglaries occurred between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. include College Street, Genoa Street and Venice Drive.
“This type of offense is considered to be a misdemeanor, but we are looking at possible organized criminal activity because we believe he has got several accomplices,” Beckham said. “We are looking for any information on persons that he might associate with.”
Beckham said Simmons is described as slender black male who is 180-200 pounds, 6-feet, 5 inches or 6-feet, 6 inches tall and in is 20’s. He was last seen wearing black shorts and a gray hooded sweatshirt. It is unknown if he is armed, Beckham said.
If residents see Simmons, they are advised not to approach him, but instead call 911 or the Ellis County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency number at 972-937-6060, where someone will then dispatch an Italy police officer.