Florida deputies identify alleged burglar by cheese dip splattered on him and vehicle

Deputies say the suspect, Joseph Valderrama, was found standing near a disabled vehicle with yellow stains on his shirt. (Source: Sarasota County Sheriff's Office)

NOKOMIS, Fla. (WWSB/Gray News) - Deputies say they identified a man who tried to steal a car because both he and the vehicle were splattered with cheese dip.

Deputies responded to a home in Nokomis around 8 a.m. on Thursday after receiving a call about a suspicious person being in the neighborhood. A woman told deputies that a man rang her doorbell asking for help with his vehicle, which he claimed was stuck in the mud. The woman believed that he was intoxicated and did not belong in the neighborhood.

A deputy came out to the scene and made contact with 23-year-old Joseph Valderramma of Venice, noticing yellow stains on his shirt as Valderramma told him that he had gotten his vehicle stuck in the woman’s yard.

At the same time, another man who lives nearby walked up to the deputy to tell him that someone had broken into his garage and tried to steal his 2018 Honda Fit from his garage.

The man told deputies that he had left his Honda unlocked with the keys inside of the vehicle with both garage doors closed, though one of the doors was unlocked, the night before.

Deputies say they found the Honda parked and locked in the driveway with both garage doors open. A cheese dip has been strewn about the garage and on top of the car. The car’s keys were found inside the refrigerator covered in cheese.

Two bottles of wine were missing from the refrigerator. One was found next to the Honda while the other was found half empty on the floor of the garage.

Also, an electrical box had been ripped from the wall of the garage and a brown sunglasses case that had been in the Honda was found on a cabinet in the garage.

Deputies again spoke to Valderramma, who they say after being read his rights, admitted going into the garage. However, deputies say Valderramma claimed he slipped and fell on the cheese and that he went into the Honda to turn off its dome light, because it was on. He also told deputies he had bought the bottle of wine found by the Honda in the driveway and claimed it fell out of his own vehicle.

Valderramma was arrested and charged with three felony counts, two for burglary and one for grand theft.

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