3 charged in Oakland County after hundreds of thefts, 25 cars stolen across Metro Detroit

Bloomfield Township police arrest men linked to crime spree

Rapheal Antonio Smith (left) Demerius Marco Hollis (center), and Samuel Bender Jr. (right). (Bloomfield Township Police Department)

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Three men have been charged in Oakland County in connection with hundreds of thefts and 25 stolen cars across Metro Detroit over the past four months, officials said.

Bloomfield Township police said Rapheal Antonio Smith, 29; Demerius Marco Hollis, 30; and Samuel Bender Jr., 32; have been charged with motor vehicle theft, larceny of personal property from a vehicle, burglary, illegal use of a credit card, and larceny of a firearm.

Detectives have been investigating a series of thefts across Metro Detroit that date back to October. They said Smith, Hollis, and Bender are “responsible for hundreds of property thefts and over 25 stolen vehicles.”

Bender was first linked to the investigation when he used a stolen credit card, officials said. Surveillance cameras later captured video of Smith and Hollis inside several stolen vehicles, according to police.

“Detectives conducted surveillance and confirmed that all three subjects were involved in this ongoing crime spree,” a release from the Bloomfield Township Police Department says.

Officers searched several homes in Detroit on Dec. 29, and Smith and Hollis were both taken into custody.

Bender was arrested by Bloomfield Township police in January. During the search, detectives said they found “a large amount of stolen property,” as well as seven stolen handguns.

Smith and Hollis were charged at 6th Circuit Court in Oakland County. Both were given bonds over $1 million.

Bender was charged at 48th District Court and is being held on $300,000 bond.

Macomb County prosecutors are also charging all three men with conducting a criminal enterprise.

The Troy Special Investigations Unit helped with this investigation. The unit includes officers from Auburn Hills, Birmingham, Bloomfield Township, Royal Oak, and Troy.

Officials from Canton Township, Livonia, Sterling Heights, and Michigan State Police were also involved, the release says.

Residents should always remember to lock their cars and remove all valuables. Keys and guns should never be left inside cars, authorities said.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.