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Theft & Property Crimes Archives

Multi-agency investigation breaks up theft crimes ring

A Houston man was recently convicted in federal court for his part in a major shoplifting and fencing operation responsible for the loss of $10 million a year in merchandise. The alleged theft crimes occurred between 2008 and 2012.The Houston Police Department and Harris County Sheriff's Office worked together with the FBI on the investigation that ended in the arrests of the Houston man and other members of the shoplifting ring. According to the FBI, the theft crimes operation had ties to the Middle East.

Parishioners prevent theft crimes in church

A 47-year-old man's attempted theft crimes in a Houston church were foiled when he was confronted by church members who were alerted by the sound of an alarm. A gaping hole in the ceiling of an office in the church bears testament to the burglary suspect's failed efforts to escape. Police arrested the man after church members bound him with tape and electrical cord. The man is being held on a felony burglary charge. A second suspect managed to get away before police arrived. It appeared to police investigating the crime that the suspects were after money, musical instruments and an amplifier. The church had been the scene of a burglary two weeks earlier in which thieves got away with a keyboard and guitars.

Man witnesses burglary of wife's car in Harris County

Police frequently rely upon eyewitnesses to help solve crimes. When theft crimes take place in public areas, there is a chance that the crime will be observed by eyewitnesses. A Harris County man became an unexpected witness to the theft of Christmas gifts from his wife's car and was able to give police a description and partial license plate number of the getaway vehicle.Later, when police spotted a vehicle matching the description of the one the witness gave them earlier in the day, they took the three occupants of the vehicle back for identification by the witness. Police released one of the men, but arrested a juvenile and a 17-year-old man on burglary charges. Police also recovered stolen Christmas presents and other property from the vehicle.

Phony Texas store robbery ends with real arrest of manager

When a 22-year-old store manager told police that he and a clerk in his store were robbed on their way to deposit the store's money, the last thing he probably expected was to be arrested and charged with theft. Unfortunately for the accused manager, the police in Temple, Texas, had prior experience with phony robbery reports.According to the police, the store manager claimed that they were confronted by an armed robber who hit the clerk in the head with a gun. Police investigating the October robbery report became suspicious of the story. Eventually, another worker at the store confessed his involvement in the scheme and agreed to cooperate with the police. In exchange for his cooperation, prosecutors offered the worker a sentence of probation.

Truck driver charged with stealing beer in Texas

A driver is facing felony theft charges after allegedly stealing 1,500 cases of beer from a truck he was driving for an employer. The truck driver is reported to have called his boss to say the truck had broken down during a trip to Corpus Christi, Texas. He later called in to work again and allegedly said that he had sold the contents of the truck because he needed the cash.The police received a tip about someone selling beer out of rental trailers and upon investigation, about a week later found boxes and wrappers with bar codes that matched those from the missing load of beer. The truck driver was arrested and is being held on a $40,000 bond for charges of felony theft. It was not clear how much he garnered from the alleged scheme, or how much he was selling the allegedly purloined goods for.

Winning lottery tickets are bad luck for robbery suspects

Two winning lottery tickets, some old-fashioned sleuthing by deputies and three confessions ended the number of theft crimes committed by a trio of robbers in one. The events started when two of the suspects purchased some drinks and lottery tickets at a Douglassville, Texas, convenience store. Two hours later, a surveillance camera at the store caught the men taking $400 to $500 from the clerk at gunpoint.A criminal investigator from the Cass County Sheriff's Office made the connection between the suspects and the robbery through the lottery tickets. The investigator checked the serial numbers of the tickets and located where the tickets were cashed. He then got a positive identification of the men when he went to a store in New Boston.

One suspect wounded in apparent gas station robbery near Houston

Authorities have charged two brothers, ages 23 and 21, with the robbery of a gas station in Harris County, Texas. Sheriff's deputies shot the younger of the two brothers when he allegedly pointed a gun at them after being ordered to drop it. Police filed theft charges against both brothers and assault charges against the wounded suspect.Deputies went to the gas station in response to a report of a robbery. Deputies arrived at the gas station as the suspects exited the station's convenience store. When they allegedly saw one of the suspects holding a gun, the deputies told him to drop it, but he pointed the gun at one of them. Both deputies fired at the suspect. A helicopter took the wounded suspect to a local hospital where he was listed in critical condition. His brother, who was uninjured, was arrested and taken into custody.

Felony theft charges for Austin swimmer towing $120,000 boat

A 26-year-old Austin man's decision to steal a 44-foot sailboat by swimming away with it in tow may have far reaching consequences following his arrest on felony theft charges. The suspect at first refused to release the $120,000 boat and surrender to police. Police arrested the man after a detective talked him into giving up his efforts to swim with the boat to deeper waters.The man's troubles began when a harbormaster who called police spotted him. Arriving police officers saw the suspect swimming in a channel with the boat attached to him by a rope. Officers said it appeared as though he was attempting to escape to deeper water but was determined not to give up the boat.

Houston man holds wife at gunpoint in robbery of her employer

A robbery at a Houston law office took a bizarre turn when it was discovered that one of the employees held at gunpoint was the robber's wife. Houston police arrested a 26-year-old ex-cop on theft charges in connection with the incident.According to the police, the man waited in the parking lot of the law office until his wife left the building in which she worked. With his face concealed with a bandana, the suspect led his wife back into the law office where he held her and two other workers at gunpoint. He ran from the office after taking nearly $8,000 that was in an envelope in a desk drawer.

Teens accused of vandalizing Houston football field face charges

For many teenagers, trying to gain acceptance during high school is a major part of growing up. When a student is rejected by friends or does not make a sports team, it can be a crushing experience. Two Houston teens are now facing charges for vandalizing their school's football field out of anger. The damages from the property crimes could cost as much as $50,000.

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