Man charged with breaking into cars, stealing purses at Nashville parks

Courtesy: Metro Nashville Police Department

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A man with a history of breaking into vehicles owned by women is now in the custody of Metro police.

Arrest records indicate 27-year-old James Currie III was given a $90,000 bond.

Metro police allege Currie targeted vehicles parked at the NES trailhead of the Richland Creek Greenway off White Bridge Road and parking lots around Percy Warner Park.

According to affidavits, Currie has broken into at least five vehicles since April. In each case, he reportedly broke the windows to take purses and wallets left inside.

Currie was developed as a suspect from video surveillance at stores where he made purchases with the stolen cards.

He was booked into the Metro jail and is facing 17 charges, including theft of a motor vehicle and identity theft.

His criminal history dates back to at least 2009.

“Most of the charges that we have seen are over and over again,” said Belle Meade Police Chief Tim Eads. “You know he is not going to stop if he gets out in three months. Somebody is going to have to deal with him all over again ’cause he does not appear he has slowed down at all.”

Police say people can also take steps to help avoid becoming car burglary victims. Those steps are part of what’s called Park-Smart. Click here for additional information. 

A similar frustration was shared by former Sumner County prosecutor William Lamberth, who is now a state lawmaker.

“Someone like this who has an extensive criminal history is not going to stop until they are locked up for real,” he told News 2.

Lamberth said current laws on habitual offenders “are not good enough. That is something we took a big swing at last session and if I am blessed to come back that is something we are going to focus on again.”

There are other opinions as to why habitual offenders like Currie continue to move in and out of the legal system.

Freeing offenders from crowded jails is sometimes cited, but others within the legal system say addictions, poverty or mental illness might not be addressed as root causes for habitual crime.

News 2 is committed to tracking crime across Middle Tennessee. Visit wkrn.com/crimetracker for the latest coverage.

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