Key suspect in smash and grab arrested
Criminal charges are pending against two men police say are involved with the crimes
A man arrested Thursday morning near the Southwest Freeway and Beechnut Street has been identified as a "ringleader" in a largely successful ATM theft ring.
Two men, identified as Elton Spivey, 30, and Terrance Foster, 25, were interviewed by police Thursday afternoon.
Criminal charges are pending against both men.
Spivey was identified as the "ringleader" by a police source.
Police said Spivey and Foster's exact roles in three smash-and-grab style overnight thefts are not yet clear.
But a detective working on a series of similar crimes, from northwest Harris County to Pearland, is confident the pair is connected to more than a dozen convenience store ATM thefts.
Typically, the crew of thief's used a stolen truck to ram a business and then drive away with a stolen ATM.
"In a couple of these the clerks were actually in the store," said Houston Police Department detective Greg Shelton.
Nobody was seriously injured in any of the incidents, but several of the targeted businesses are owned by families with modest incomes who have faced repairs bills of more than $10,000.