Houston police arrested two men accused of being tied to a string of burglaries in downtown Houston near Minute Maid Park, according to officers.
The Houston Police Department said 21-year-old Terry Jose Emanuel and 23-year-old Jarek Jace Thomas allegedly played a role in the burglaries of several vehicles from multiple parking lots along Dallas, Congress, and Chartres Streets on Sunday.
A tracker found there were more than 650 thefts from vehicles in this area and downtown over the last 12 months. The data shows that thefts are trending up 14% from the year prior.
“I was like, ‘I can’t believe it,'” Frances Elizondo, a burglary victim, said.
Elizondo is one of several victims who had a firearm stolen from their vehicles.
Houston police said officers were able to recover seven stolen weapons and $41,000 in cash from the suspects’ possession.
“(I) noticed the glove box was open with everything on the floor, and the first thing I thought of was my purse,” Elizondo said.
The purse is too big to carry into the park, and weapons are not allowed inside. Robert Boyett had a similar issue with his pistol.
“We realized our truck had been broken into. The people right next to us walked to their vehicle and were like, ‘Our vehicle was broken into,'” Boyett said.
Suspects Emanuel and Thomas are accused of trying to evade officers and get onto the freeway.
Police said when they tried to conduct a traffic stop, both suspects ran away, but after a short chase, both of the men were arrested.
HPD confirms that officers were doing an undercover vehicle burglary operation near Minute Maid Park.