HOUSTON - Two documented gang members are accused of watching bank customers to target in a robbery scheme, which led to an incident involving a stolen gun and a car crash, the Houston Police Department said Friday.
Frederick Lamonte Pierson and Ricky Harrell now face multiple charges, police said.
The situation started Friday when Pierson and Harrell, who are from the Trinity Garden neighborhood of Northeast Houston, started “bank jugging” -- or watching bank customers who they planned on following, officers said.
A bank customer at a financial institution in North Houston made a transaction, then drove to another location, according to police.
The pair followed the man and broke into his car, stealing his money and a loaded gun, police said.
Harrell and Pierson then sped off, crashing the vehicle near Little York and the Eastex Freeway, police said.
They fled that scene in another vehicle but were captured by police a short time later.
Harrell was already out on two felony bonds, police said. In April 2017, Harrell was arrested in possession of crack cocaine. In August 2017, while on bond for the cocaine case, Harrell and another gang member followed a man from a bank and burglarized his vehicle, police said.
Harrell was charged with engaging in organized criminal activity in that bank jugging incident.
Police said he and his accomplice were accused of targeting Asian bank customers.
Pierson was also out on bond before Friday’s arrest. Last August, Pierson was charged with delivery of crack cocaine after he was caught selling the drug next to an elementary school in Northeast Houston. He posted a $15,000 bond at the time, officers said.
Now, both men have been charged with theft of a firearm. Pierson is accused of being a felon in possession of a firearm, as well. His extensive criminal history includes more than 14 prior felony arrests, including violent offenses.
Harrell and Pierson may be responsible for even more bank jugging cases, police said. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS or the Houston Police Department at 713-884-3131.
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