Car burglary suspect still at large
A suspected car burglar from Corpus Christi is still at large this week after leading officers on a chase up State Hwy. 361 to Port Aransas, then ditching his own car and apparently getting away on foot.
The man left his car behind a driveway screen on Mustang Boulevard in a spot that couldn't easily be seen from the street. Police, suspecting he might be in the home, called the homeowners, who weren't in town, for permission to enter the home. Permission was granted, but when police entered the house they found nobody there, and no indication that the man had been inside.
It started Friday morning, June 8, when a person saw the man breaking into a car, Corpus Christi police said. The witness called police, but when they got to the scene, the man got into a car and drove off.
Police chased him across the JFK bridge and up State Hwy. 361 before deciding to end the chase because of the number of out-of-town people visiting Port Aransas, they said.
However, after the man's car was spotted in Island Moorings, Corpus Christi and Port Aransas officers, as well as deputy constables from Precinct 4 and Department of Public Safety troopers converged on the house, in the 300 block of Mustang Boulevard. A Department of Public Safety helicopter circled overhead while police reached the owner for permission to get a locksmith to let them into the house.
Shotgun-wielding officers posted at the corners of the building made it clear that they wouldn't let the man get away again.
However, when the house was found empty, most of the officers dispersed, returning to more routine duties. Some went house-to-house in Island Moorings, both to reassure homeowners and to ensure that the fugitive hadn't chosen another house to hole up in.
Port Aransas police were told that Corpus Christi officers were pursuing the man up the Island Road, but didn't learn that the chase had been discontinued, said Port Aransas police Lt. James Stokes.
The lack of communications points up the need for a new radio system that would let Port Aransas police talk directly to neighboring police departments, Port Aransas Chief Sam Russell said. He said city officials are exploring the possibility of grant funds that would let them buy equipment that would allow what police call "intercommunicability."
Russell said in an instance such as Friday's, officers could talk directly to each other on the ground instead of having to go through dispatch centers.
The new equipment, if funding is approved, would be on the same frequency as Corpus Christi and Nueces County officers and Corpus Christi firefighters, who can talk to each other over what are called "trunked frequencies."