Convenience store robbery investigation underway
Police are investigating an early morning robbery at the Chevron located at 1651 W. Parkwood Avenue. The preliminary report states that a male of unknown race wearing dark clothing entered the store at approximately 4:20 a.m. on September 12. The robber was wearing gloves and a ski mask. He took money from the safe and cash register drawers. He hit the clerk in the back of the head; she had to be transported to the hospital. Police believe the robber was parked on San Joaquin. This is still an active investigation.
Reckless driver endangers police officers
As officers were conducting an arrest and vehicle search in the 5000 block of FM 2351 at2:33 a.m. on September 7, they were approached by a red Mazda traveling at a high rate of speed. The Mazda was not able to move over into another lane and did not slow down to 20 mph under the posted limit. One of the officers waved at the motorist to slow down. The driver, Melvin Wayne Cook, 43, stopped his vehicle and yelled profanities at the officer. Then, he sped away, did a donut in the middle of the street and came back toward the officers from the opposite direction. The officer ordered the vehicle to stop and it did, but Cook refused to exit the vehicle. As the officer attempted to open the door, Cook took off with the officer still trying to open the door. Another officer ran back to his patrol unit and initiated a pursuit. Cook drove through the Bridgestone Apartments and then back onto FM 2351. He took the turn onto FM 2351 too tight which allowed the officer to get in front of him and block him in. Cook surrendered and officers began a DWI investigation. Cook’s disturbing violent conduct outweighed any signs of intoxication and he was charged with Aggravated Assault on a Public Servant and Evading Arrest or Detention. He claimed that he took off in his vehicle in order to give himself time to think and allow himself time to dispose of his narcotics. However, no narcotics were ever found in the area.
Pictured above – Melvin Cook
Stolen mail found during cocaine and methamphetamine arrest
Jonathan Raul Farias, 30, of Pearland, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 1. Anna Maria Fonseca, 28, of Pearland, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 4. An officer pulled up beside Farias at a red light in the 700 block of W. Parkwood Avenue on September 6 at 6:55 p.m. The officer, who knows Farias by sight, checked his driving status and found that Farias’ driver’s license was suspended and he had a felony warrant for Forgery of a Government Document in Harris County. Farias pulled into the Valero station and exited the vehicle. Fonseca also exited from the passenger side and began to get a child out of the back seat. The officer approached Farias and took him into custody for the felony warrant. As the officer stood next to Farias’ vehicle, he detected the smell of marijuana, so a probable cause search was conducted. Officers found .3 grams of cocaine, .3 grams of methamphetamine, 4 doses of Suboxone (in Fonseca’s purse), 2.7 grams of Vyvanse and two glass meth pipes. In the back of the vehicle, officers found personal mail belonging to several different people and recovered the mail as evidence. The mail was taken from six different mailboxes in the Friendswood area.
Pictured above – Jonathan Farias and Anna Fonseca
Sept. 9 (10:59 p.m.) Wray Steven Widner, 50, of Friendswood, was charged with Interfere with Duties of a Public Servant. Jennifer Crawford Widner, 48, of Friendswood, was charged with Assault by Contact-Family Violence. Police responded to a residence in the 300 block of Silver Cliff Lane where an assault was reported. The police dispatcher heard yelling in the background and was advised that there were children in the home. When police arrived, they knocked on the door, but no one answered. They continued knocking until Wray Widner came downstairs and announced that he no longer wanted the police at his residence, turned off the lights and went back upstairs. Police continued knocking and trying to convince Mr. Widner to open the door. While peering through the door, one of the officers could see a rifle leaning against a wall. Due to the circumstances and reports of an assault, police breached the door and took Mr. Widner into custody. Mr. Widner had been drinking. Another officer checked the residence and was able to find Jennifer Widner at the back of the house. She told police that Mr. Widner was drunk and belligerent and called her names so she grabbed a brick from the flower bed and hit him with it. Mrs. Widner had also been drinking and was taken into custody. The residence and child were turned over to a neighbor.
Sept. 7 (2:23 p.m.) Alesia Jane Chapman, 24, of Alvin, was charged with Theft. HEB employees witnessed Chapman and another female stuffing items from a cart into a backpack. Chapman took the backpack and left the store without paying for the items while the other female stayed with the cart and paid for several bottles of coke. Once Chapman passed all of the points of sale, she was asked to return to the store. Chapman stole sushi rolls, fruit, water and other assorted items totaling $60.
Sept. 11 (3:18 p.m.) A Friendswood resident hospitalized for the past few days contacted police when his neighbor told him that his vehicle was no longer in his driveway. The vehicle was last known to be in the driveway of a residence in the 16700 block of Barcelona Drive on September 10 at 6:00 p.m. and was discovered missing on September 11 at 10:00 a.m. The owner claims that he has the keys to the vehicle and has not given anyone permission to drive it or borrow it. The vehicle is described as a red 2008 Chevrolet Aveo with Texas license plates CY7S768; it has a NASA sticker in the middle of the back window. The owner suspects it was stolen by a man who he allowed to stay at his home just before his hospital stay.
Sept. 9 (4:03 p.m.) A Friendswood woman contacted police after she received a text message from her financial institution. The text was inquiring about a purchase at a Walmart store. She replied to the text stating that she did not make the purchase and was told that a fraudulent transaction had taken place. She checked her account online and found five other fraudulent transactions.
Sept. 10 (1:54 p.m.) A Friendswood resident reported fraudulent charges on her bank account. She got online, checked her statement and found unauthorized purchases and ATM withdrawals that she did not make. A suspect has been identified. The same suspect may also be responsible for opening a fraudulent credit card account.
Sept. 5 (8:10 p.m.) A work van was parked in the 100 block of Brigadoon Lane at approximately 3:30 p.m. on September 2. On September 5 at 7:00 p.m., the driver of the van noticed that the front windshield was damaged.
Sept. 6 (2:38 p.m.) David Alexis Rivas, 22, of Friendswood, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 1. Police were dispatched to a residence in the 500 block of Kingsbury where a man damaged another person’s vehicle. The suspect, identified as Rivas, left the scene driving a blue Ford F150. An officer located Rivas as he was driving through a school zone using his cell phone and conducted a traffic stop in the 1600 block of Sunset Drive. Another officer contacted the victim, who is in a relationship with Rivas. She claimed Rivas was jealous when she received a phone call, pushed her to the ground and then grabbed a piece of plywood and began hitting the victim’s vehicle. The officer checked the vehicle’s registration and discovered that Rivas damaged his own vehicle. Rivas was taken into custody for the assault. During booking, the officer found .9 grams of methamphetamine inside Rivas’ wallet. Rivas’ bond was set at $60,000.
Sept. 7 (5:57 p.m.) Emily Renee Roy, 33, of Dickinson, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 3. A witness reported a vehicle just sitting in the median in the area of W. Bay Area Blvd and FM 528. When an officer arrived in the area, the vehicle made an illegal turn as it left the apartment complex in the 3100 block of W. Bay Area Blvd. The officer stopped the vehicle and identified Roy as the driver. She was very nervous, visibly shaking and had outstanding Dickinson warrants. Roy gave the officer permission to search her vehicle. He found .3 grams of Clonazepam in her purse.
Sept. 8 (1:33 p.m.) Estevan Mark Jones, 37, of Friendswood, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 3 and Possession of a Dangerous Drug. Cecilia Marie Olivarez, 24, of Houston, was charged with No Driver’s License and No Insurance. Olivarez was stopped for expired registration in the 2900 block of W. Bay Area Blvd. As the officer approached the vehicle, Jones exited. The officer asked Jones to remain outside the vehicle, identified him and then identified the driver, Olivarez. Olivarez did not have a driver’s license; her Texas ID card was suspended and she had a warrant. Olivarez was taken into custody. The officer checked Jones for weapons and felt what appeared to be loose pills in his pocket. The officer was given consent to investigate what was in his pocket and pulled out Somas and Hydrocodone.
Sept. 8 (11:28 p.m.) Michael Elliott Deats, 32, of Pasadena, was charged with Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Deats was a passenger in a vehicle stopped for expired registration in the 500 block of N. Friendswood Drive. During contact with the occupants of the vehicle, the officer noticed that both of them appeared very nervous. Due to this overly nervous behavior, the officer asked for consent to search the vehicle. The driver consented and the officer found a glass marijuana pipe and a small baggie of marijuana in Deats’ backpack. The driver was issued a citation and released.
Sept. 9 (1:01 p.m.) Joseph Christian Munoz, 24, of Katy, was charged with Possession of Marijuana and Unlawfully Carrying a Weapon. Orlando Raymond Reyes, 25, of Houston, was arrested for an outstanding Harris County warrant. Munoz was stopped for running a stop sign in the 1700 block of San Joaquin Parkway. The officer identified the passenger, Reyes, and while doing so detected the semll of marijuana. Munoz and Reyes denied having anything illegal inside the vehicle, but Munoz did tell the officer that he had a gun in his backpack. The officer conducted a search and found a glass pipe with marijuana residue, the handgun, a baggie of marijuana, and a metal grinder. Munoz’ bond was set at $2,500.
Sept. 11 (1:50 a.m.) Denise Renee Bijak, 35, of Alvin, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 1. Bijak was stopped in the 3800 block of Laura Leigh after an officer ran her license plate and found that her registration was expired. During contact with Bijak, the officer noticed butane gas cans in the backseat floorboard. The officer knew that these are commonly used by methamphetamine users and Bijak appeared to be nervous. Bijak gave the officer consent to search her vehicle. A meth pipe and methamphetamine were found.
Driving While Intoxicated
Sept. 9 (12:34 a.m.) Eric Baxter Johnson, 29, of Friendswood, was charged with Driving While Intoxicated. An officer was traveling in the 600 block of S. Friendswood Drive when she noticed a motorist behind her make an illegal lane change and hit the curb. The officer got behind the vehicle and observed as the vehicle crossed outside its lane several times before making a traffic stop in the 100 block of S. Friendswood Drive. Johnson exhibited signs of intoxication, failed a field sobriety test and registered .223 on a breath test.
Sept. 8 (12:46 p.m.) Peter Martin Lechner, 52, of Friendswood, was charged with Public Intoxication. A witness reported an intoxicated person at the Aqua Car Wash located in the 4400 block of FM 2351. Officers found the man sitting inside a vehicle and asked him to roll down his windows. He rolled down the rear windows. The man was identified as Lechner and he exhibited signs of intoxication and was taken into custody.
Sept. 11 (12:13 a.m.) Ricky Clarence Peck, Jr., 39, of Texas City, was charged with Public Intoxication in the 100 block of Imperial Drive. An officer noticed a vehicle parked with its lights off. The officer approached the vehicle and found Peck curled up and asleep in the driver’s seat. When Peck woke up, he exhibited signs of intoxication. Peck thought he was in Texas City. He was taken into custody.
Sept. 7 (1:00 a.m.) Scott Allen Bitner, 45, of South Houston, was charged with Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Felon. Bitner was stopped after making a wide right turn onto the 5000 block of FM 2351 from Blackhawk Blvd. The officer had seen the vehicle at a known drug dealer’s home earlier. Bitner exited the vehicle and claimed that he had nothing illegal and gave the officer consent to search his vehicle. Megan Antoinette Manion, 31, of Friendswood, the passenger, also exited the vehicle. The officer opened the hood of the vehicle and observed something hidden in front of the battery. It was a camouflage pouch that contained a handgun. The officer checked Bitner’s criminal history and found that he had several felony convictions. The officer also checked Manion’s identifiers and found that she had outstanding Friendswood warrants.
Sept. 8 (2:53 p.m.) An officer noticed Travis Alfonse Marino, 26, of Friendswood, driving, checked him for warrants and found that he had an outstanding warrant– in Brazos County. The officer also knew the passenger in the vehicle as Jeremy Douglas Taylor, 35, of Friendswood, checked him for warrants and found that he had outstanding Friendswood warrants. As they exited a neighborhood onto N. Friendswood Drive, Marino did not stop for the stop sign. The officer got behind the vehicle and noticed that the tail lamps on the vehicle were tinted making visibility of the brake lights difficult and stopped the vehicle in the 100 block of N. Friendswood Drive. Taylor knew he had warrants and was taken into custody. Marino was also detained. Marino was charged with No Driver’s License on Demand, Disregarding a Stop Sign and Defective Tail Lamps. Taylor, 35, of Friendswood, was arrested for outstanding Friendswood warrants.
Sept. 9 (3:12 p.m.) Ediberto Antonio DeLeon, 27, of Dickinson, was charged with No Driver’s License and No Insurance. DeLeon was stopped for an insurance violation in the 1200 block of W. Parkwood Avenue. DeLeon has never had a driver’s license and did not have proof of insurance.
Sept. 10 (4:35 p.m.) Rin Tohsaka, 46, of Friendswood, was charged with Ficticious Registration Insignia and No Insurance in the 16100 block of Blackhawk Blvd. Tohsaka was stopped for expired registration. The temporary tag had been altered and was displaying an expiration date of 9/27 instead of 7/21. Tohasaka at first identified herself as Francine P. Robideau using a Florida driver’s license. During a consent search of the vehicle, the officer found a wallet that contained a driver’s license for Tohsaka. The officer checked the driver status and found that she had five outstanding warrants in Kemah. Once the officer removed the temporary license plate, she found a Florida license plate with a sticker that had also been altered.
TIP OF THE WEEK
Chip card transactions combat fraud
Chip card security is the latest standard in credit card security and banks are quickly phasing out magnetic stripe cards in favor of these more secure, authenticated ways to pay. Chip cards are primarily designed to prevent fraudulent transactions that take place when someone physically swipes a counterfeit card at a payment terminal. Unlike magnetic stripes, the data on chip cards is extremely hard to isolate and extract. In fact, the high-tech equipment to extract and manipulate it can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars – not the kind of cash your average fraudster has handy.
A Friendswood business recently changed to chip card readers and has seen firsthand how this technology can prevent fraud. The business reported several fraudulent transactions that were made with fraudulent magnetic stripe cards. The businesses usually don’t find out immediately that the cards are fraudulent until they receive chargebacks on their account. A couple has targeted this Friendswood business for half a dozen fraudulent transactions. When they tried to make credit card purchases again, after the chip readers were installed, they changed their mind. The business was able to thwart another fraudulent credit card transaction when another customer refused to use the chip reader for his transaction.
National Night Out
National Night Out is a great opportunity for citizens and law enforcement to partner up against crime. We invite you to attend the event, meet your neighbors and commit to helping law enforcement reduce crime in your community.
This year, National Night Out is Tuesday, October 4, 2016, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Neighborhoods must register by 5:00 p.m. September 16, 2016.
You can join the National Night Out event by: (1) getting all of your neighbors to turn on their porch lights; (2) organizing a block party or some type of neighborhood event; (3) filling out and returning the National Night Out application to the address below:
Friendswood Police Department
Attn: Officer Kevin Crouch
1600 Whitaker Drive
Friendswood, TX 77546
Fax (281) 482-9318
Email [email protected]