‘Rowdy’ Hayden’s Office tracks down alleged crook accused of holiday season theft spree

James Riley, 40, was arrested and charged with aggravated robbery and three counts of felony theft. (KPRC)

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas – A wanted criminal believed to be responsible for committing multiple thefts during the holiday season has been tracked down and arrested, according to Montgomery County Precinct 4 Constable Kenneth “Rowdy” Hayden’s Office.

James Riley, 40, was arrested Tuesday and charged with aggravated robbery and three counts of felony theft.

The investigation started in mid- to late December when Precinct 4 deputies working the Safe Shopper Program connected a few theft cases together that occurred at local retail stores. Investigators said the same suspect struck again on Dec. 30 at the Walmart in New Caney. This time, however, he brandished a knife when confronted by employees at the exit and managed to flee the scene.

Deputies checked security footage, compiling it with witness statements, and identified Riley as their suspect. A warrant was then issued for his arrest.

Deputies said Riley is no stranger to the law. He is currently on parole for possession of a controlled substance, and on bond for driving while intoxicated (DWI).

Riley, who is wanted for felony offenses in several jurisdictions, was booked into the Montgomery County Jail.

“This arrest is the direct result of textbook police work,” said Constable Hayden. “My guys gathered the evidence, followed up on every lead, then executed an arrest warrant seamlessly. I couldn’t be prouder of them!”