A 31-year-old Lake Placid man was arrested this week and accused of helping a Sebring woman burn her 2011 Jaguar XF car for insurance money, according to an arrest warrant.
Jose Manuel Romero of 1576 Buck St. in Lake Placid was arrested Thursday, June 6 by the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office deputies and charged with second-degree arson and arson with intent to defraud an insurer.
It was last month that Tracy Reed of Sebring reported someone had stolen her luxury car. The charred remains of the Jaguar were found in an isolated area of Lake Placid, near the Sun ’n Lake Estates subdivision.
Reed was charged with second-degree arson, grand theft, arson with intent to defraud a user, two counts of insurance fraud and making a false report of a crime.
According to the arrest warrant for Romero, Reed’s son told authorities that his mother told him that she intended to get rid of the vehicle for financial reasons. Based on text messages between Reed and Romero, authorities said, they had cause to seek Romero’s arrest, the warrant said.