Maryland man and his mom charged in Selbyville vehicle break-ins

Teresa L. Morton

Bradley P. Morton

SELBYVILLE — A mother and son were arrested early Monday morning after a theft from vehicle complaint in the Swann Keys neighborhood, Delaware State Police said.

Authorities were dispatched to the 36000 block of Wood Duck Way at approximately 2:15 a.m. That’s when they spotted a vehicle driving slowly through the development, spokesman Master Cpl. Gary Fournier said. A trooper activated his emergency lights, police said, and the Crown Victoria failed to stop.
Police said the vehicle continued to travel before stopping in a community pool area.

Bradley P. Morton, 24, of Bishopville, Maryland, matched the suspect description, police said. He was taken into custody without further incident.

Mr. Morton’s mother, Teresa L. Morton, also of Bishopville, walked up to the area and was also taken into custody, police said.

Police conducted a computer check and said Mr. Morton was found to be wanted for alleged forgery and thefts in April. Authorities alleged that he stole a check from a vehicle on Grant Avenue in Selbyville, wrote the check out to himself for $150 and cashed it at a bank after forging the check owner’s name.

Mr. Morton was charged with two counts of forgery, second-degree burglary, identity theft, seven counts of theft, driving under the influence of alcohol, disregarding a police officer’s signal, driving while suspended or revoked and other traffic-related charges. He was arraigned at Justice of the Peace Court 2 in Rehoboth Beach and held at Sussex Correctional Institution in Georgetown on $26,200 secured bond.

According to police, more theft charges were anticipated as investigation into other alleged thefts from vehicles in the area continued.

Ms. Morton was charged with three counts each of attempted theft and criminal trespass, and second-degree conspiracy. She was arraigned at JP Court 2 and released on $4,003 unsecured bond.

Called to scene

Police were first called to the scene by a homeowner who told troopers she went downstairs for a drink of water, looked out a window and saw a man walking from her car, according a probable cause affidavit. While she initially thought it was a neighbor, according to police, she became alarmed when the suspect walked up to another residence.

“She advised that she knew something was wrong because (name redacted) was an older man and would never be up this late at night,” an arresting officer wrote in the affidavit.

The homeowner claimed to see a suspect walk up to another vehicle and enter it, which caused the exterior lights to reflect off the garage door.

The person immediately fled when the witness yelled “Hey, what are you doing,” according to investigation.

Both defendants entered not guilty pleas in court.

According to police in documents, “Both Bradley and Teresa Morton both later admitted that items were removed from vehicles during the incident as well as numerous incidents in the area over the last six months.”

Under Miranda during an interview with police, according to documents, Ms. Bradley, “admitted that she and Bradley drove to the (redacted) development with the intention of removing items from unsecure vehicles.

“Teresa stated that she has very little income and was attempting to supplement her income by removing change from vehicles. Bradley was also interviewed and admitted same.”

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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