San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

August 18th, 2009
HCSO detains serial burglary suspects

STAFF REPORT

The Hays County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) has apprehended two adults and three juveniles who have been linked to about three dozen cases of automobile burglary and criminal mischief in recent months.

Deputies detained the suspects last week after setting up a baiting operation on Woodcreek Drive in Woodcreek.

Responding to numerous reports of auto burglary and criminal mischief this summer, Hays County Sheriff Tommy Ratliff instructed his criminal investigations division to plant bait vehicles with valuables in plain sight in areas where the crimes are known to occur. The bait vehicles are monitored by plain clothes detectives in unmarked sheriff’s cars.

At around midnight on Aug. 13, detectives observed a pickup truck travelling in the area. As the pickup passed the detectives’ location, the detectives heard the breaking of glass, as if a car window had been broken.

Detectives stopped the truck and detained the occupants, then began an investigation into their actions.  The investigation has lead to the recovery of property. The suspects have given statements to detectives admitting their involvement in several auto burglaries and criminal mischief incidents in the Wimberley area.

Detectives are continuing their investigation into the conduct of the suspects. In addition to approximately 36 cases of auto burglary and criminal mischief to which the detainees have been linked, the sheriff’s office said it is possible they will be linked to many more.

Said Ratliff, “The reduction in any type crime in Hays County is my top priority and my staff is researching the availability of surveillance equipment and any other technical aids to assist with this endeavor.”

It is expected that charges will be filed in the near future.

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