AUSTIN, Texas - Three men were arrested Friday afternoon as a result of a "jugging" operation by Austin police officers.
Dimarkus Mitchell (Austin Police Department)
On Nov. 3 at noon, plainclothes officers were sent to the Chase Bank at 701 E. Stassney Lane, which had been previously identified by APD's crime analysis unit as one of the top four Austin banks where juggings begin.
The officers were surveilling the parking lot for suspicious behavior consistent with juggings and identified two occupied vehicles that appeared to be working together.
A banking customer left the parking lot and the two vehicles followed her. A short time later, she pulled into a parking lot on W. Oltorf Street, followed by the suspect vehicles.
The suspects pulled in and robbed the victim within seconds as officers were still arriving. Officers went to help the victim as the suspects fled in their vehicles; other officers followed the suspects until more units arrived to help arrest them.
Officers searched the suspect vehicles and found several instruments commonly used to commit burglaries and theft like a drill and window punch. The victim’s purse was also found along the path that the suspect vehicles drove as they left the scene.
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31-year-old Dimarkus Mitchell, 33-year-old Darrian Haywood, and 31-year-old Darrell Jones were arrested and charged with robbery by assault and engaging in organized crime. The trio have been booked into Travis County Jail.
APD says these arrests were in response to the pervasive problem of jugging crimes in the Austin area and are the results of combined efforts of their Crime Analysis Unit, North Metro Tac Unit, Organized Crime Division, Robbery Unit, SWAT, and Region I Detectives.
APD is also reminding the community to be vigilant and aware when going to the bank and call 911 if they found someone is following them after a cash withdrawal. Residents should also not leave cash in their vehicle to avoid becoming a victim.