HOUSTON - Two men were arrested after authorities said they robbed a bank customer shortly after the customer left a bank in Midtown.
On Wednesday around 2:30 p.m., according to Houston police, Joseph Mason and Leon Dorsey followed a customer, who was in in their vehicle, from a bank to a nearby business. The customer left their property in their vehicle and Mason and Dorsey broke a window and stole the property, police said.
Mason and Dorsey were arrested shortly after the crime and the property was recovered.
Mason and Dorsey were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity and burglary of a motor vehicle, police said.
At the time of the crime, Mason was on deferred adjudication for a 2017 credit card abuse case, according to police records. In that incident, Mason broke into a woman's vehicle at a north Houston gym, stole her credit cards and used them to purchase gift cards and video game consoles, according to police.
Mason has numerous prior arrests for credit card abuse, burglary of a motor vehicle, felony theft, theft, issuing a bad check, theft by check, failure to provide ID, driving while license invalid, interfering with a public servant, criminal trespass, assault, DWI, engaging in organized criminal activity, forgery, driving while license suspended, possession of a controlled substance (codeine) and tampering with evidence. In total, Mason has more than 14 prior felony arrests, police said.
Dorsey's criminal history includes failure to appear, criminal trespass, aggravated robbery, possession of crack cocaine, felony dogfighting, fraudulent possession of identifying information, felony theft, deadly conduct and burglary of a motor vehicle. In total, Leon Dorsey has more than five prior felony arrests, police said.
Houston police said Mason and Dorsey are documented gang members from the 5th Ward area of northeast Houston and are believed to be involved in numerous other bank jugging crimes.
Houston police said the men are associated with a larger criminal organization that is responsible for hundreds of similar offenses throughout Houston and the state of Texas.
"Bank jugging" refers to a customer being targeted for theft or robbery as they leave a bank with cash. Jugging suspects follow customers from a bank, with the intent to steal the money that the customers have withdrawn. The offense is a growing crime trend in Texas and an epidemic in the Houston area.
Police are asking anyone with information on other crimes these men have been involved with, or anyone who has been the victim of a similar crime, to contact Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS (8477) or the Houston Police Department at 713-884-3131.
Copyright 2018 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved.