More than 100 local vehicle burglaries in Bell, Williamson and Travis counties have been linked to two Central Texans who were arrested after a pursuit from the Belton area to Killeen, the Bell County Sheriff’s Department said Thursday.
A Killeen man and a Pflugerville woman were arrested July 14 and taken to the Bell County Jail, the Bell County Sheriff’s Department said.
Don Miller Jr., 34, of Killeen, the driver of the vehicle, is charged with felony charges for evading arrest and felon in possession of a firearm, the Sheriff’s Department said. He also is charged with two counts of burglary of vehicle, both Class A misdemeanors, from the Belton Police Department and the Sheriff’s Department. His bonds total $30,000, jail records show.
Shanikka Latara Toliver, 32, of Pflugerville, is charged with two counts of credit card/debit card abuse, state jail felonies. She was released from the jail late Thursday evening after posting $60,000 in bonds, the Sheriff’s Department said.
Following the pair’s arrests, investigators with the Sheriff’s Department executed search warrants at two Killeen locations. At the sites, more than 100 purses and wallets were recovered, Lt. Bob Reinhard said in a news release.
Deputies also found dozens of pieces of identifying information, such as driver licenses and Social Security cards, were recovered, Reinhard said.
“Each of the burglaries included forced entry through windows, and primarily purses and/or wallets were targeted,” Reinhard said.
Investigators are working with other local law enforcement agencies to return the property to the victims.
Additional suspects have been identified and investigators are working with prosecutors to present further charges. Based on property recovered, it is believed the suspects may be responsible for vehicle burglaries committed in Bell, Williamson and Travis counties, Reinhard said.
“This has been a multi-agency collaborated effort in response to dozens of car burglaries throughout Central Texas and investigations are ongoing,” Reinhard said in a news release. “We would like to remind the community to lock your vehicles and hide or remove valuables when visiting public parks.”
Toliver was linked through debit card/credit card abuse to vehicle burglaries at two Belton parks in March, Belton Police spokeswoman Candice Griffin said.
On March 14, a purse was taken at about 8 p.m. from an unlocked vehicle at Miller Springs Park, 1900 Lake Road. Two weeks later, at 5 p.m. on March 28, someone broke a vehicle window at Heritage Park, 1502 Park Ave.
“Debit and credit cards taken from the vehicle burglaries were used in various Bell County locations,” Griffin said. “An investigation by the Belton Police Criminal Investigations Division led to credit card abuse warrants on the suspect, identified as Shanikka Toliver, 32, of Pflugerville.”
Miller was linked to a vehicle burglary at Heritage Park on July 6.
“A window was broken to gain access to a purse and cash in a vehicle,” Griffin said. “An investigation by the Belton Police Criminal Investigations Division led to a burglary of a vehicle warrant on the suspect, identified as Don Miller Jr., 34, of Killeen.”
Miller and Toliver were both served with the Belton warrants July 14 while in custody at the Bell County Jail, Griffin said.
Pursuit from park
The pursuit occurred the evening of July 14 after investigators saw the suspects in a vehicle at Chalk Ridge Falls Park, 5600 FM 1670.
Once officers attempted to make contact with the occupants, the vehicle sped off, Reinhard said.
The pursuit continued from Belton along Interstate 14 and ended near the intersection of 28th Street and Veterans Memorial Boulevard in Killeen.
Killeen police officers and Bell County constables assisted the Sheriff’s Department with the arrests, Reinhard said.