Crime & Courts

Man accused of stealing items from Charlotte firefighters’ cars

Johnny Bing
Johnny Bing Mecklenburg County jail

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police arrested a Charlotte man in connection with recent break-ins and thefts from firefighters’ cars at five Charlotte Fire Department stations.

Police said they believe suspect Johnny Bing, 26, of Charlotte, acted alone.

Evidence and interviews led police to identify a vehicle in connection with the break-ins.

Police said they spotted the vehicle in the parking lot of Northlake Mall in north Charlotte on Wednesday evening. Bing was driving the vehicle, police said.

Bing was charged with two counts each of possession of a stolen firearm and possession of stolen property and one count each of receiving stolen property, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of marijuana. Bing is free on $60,500 bail.

Police charged a passenger in the vehicle, Ernestine Lockwood, 22, of Charlotte, with two counts of possession of stolen property and outstanding warrants unrelated to the car break-ins. She is free on $4,000 bail.

While searching the vehicle, police found a firearm that was stolen from a vehicle in Greensboro on Tuesday and other stolen property.

Police said more charges are pending against Bing in the thefts from the firefighters’ cars.

Fifteen cars were broken into this month at Charlotte fire stations.

The first two break-ins happened Feb. 13 at Station 5 on Wesley Heights Way, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said. No items were taken, police said.

That same morning, police responded to Fire Station 18 on Dr. Webber Avenue, where two more cars were broken into and items stolen.

On Feb. 15, three cars were broken into at Fire Station 13 on Glenwood Drive.

On Feb. 19, cars at two more fire stations were broken into – five cars at Fire Station 26 on South Tryon Street in Steele Creek and three cars at Station 21 on Little Rock Road in west Charlotte.

Anyone with information about the cases or Bing is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.

Joe Marusak: 704-358-5067, @jmarusak