New Smyrna Beach man has tools stolen, extorted for money

Ryan Stephens told News 6 how he helped police catch the suspect

A New Smyrna Beach man is relieved after police helped him get back his box of tools, which was worth upward of $1,000.

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – A New Smyrna Beach man is relieved after police helped him get back his box of tools, which was worth upward of $1,000.

Ryan Stephens said he first noticed his toolbox was gone from his patio when he was on his way to work. Inside the box, there were multiple tools he uses for his motorcycle.

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News 6 received reports from the New Smyrna Beach Police Department detailing what happened after Stephens notified officers.

Police said Stephens tried to find the items himself by passing out his phone number. Stephens asked multiple people to call him if they found his equipment.

“That evening, I got a phone call from someone who said, ‘I got your equipment. I’ve got your gas tank, your toolbox and all the tools, but I want $500 to make things right,’” Stephens said.

Stephens believes it was the same man who stole the box to begin with.

He told the suspect it was a deal. They chose the Harley Davidson dealership on State Road 44 as a meet-up location.

What the alleged thief didn’t know was that police were in on it.

Police said they saw a man arrive at the dealership on a bicycle. Shortly afterward, the man left the parking lot.

“I think he kind of caught on to what was going on because he started peddling as hard as he could back up the road up (State Road) 44,” Stephens said.

Officers quickly caught and arrested him.

“He gave up where the goods were immediately and said he found it at a drug house,” Stephens said.

Leonard Annarino, 54 (Volusia County Corrections)

The suspect, 54-year-old Leonard Annarino, is facing three charges, including grand theft.

Stephens said this was very personal for him, especially because it was terrifying to think the tools were stolen not far from where his son sleeps.

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About the Author:

Treasure joined News 6 at the start of 2021, coming to the Sunshine State from Michigan.