Harris County prosecutors on Monday charged 11 people in connection to dozens of armed robberies that happened over the course of a year in the Houston and Galveston area.
The charges stem from investigations into 41 robberies that happened from July 2018 to February 2019, including a robbery at La Michoacana Meat Market in Galveston in January, prosecutors said.
Tom Grant, 18, and Jacquez Keli, 17, were both charged in connection to crimes in Galveston, according to the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.
They and nine other men are accused of being parts of crews of masked men who would target meat markets that caters to Hispanics.
During the Galveston robbery on Jan. 4, masked men entered the store at about 9:15 a.m. and fired shots into the air, striking a sign above a service counter. The men fled the store and escaped despite a police manhunt in the vicinity of the store.
Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said a similar strategy was used by groups of men in other area robberies.
“The evidence shows these crews robbed everywhere but their own neighborhoods, as they preyed on businesses and terrified innocent people,” Ogg said. “Now they will have to stand in court and face judgment.”
The robbery was one of more than a dozen armed robberies in Galveston that occurred in late 2018 and early 2019 that prompted the Galveston Police Department to create a task force to investigate them and to make arrests.
Multiple agencies worked together to makes the arrests announced Tuesday, including the Houston Police Department; the Harris County Sheriff’s Office; U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas; the Galveston Police Department; the Beaumont Police Department and the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.