Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's deputies have arrested five Texas residents, and are searching for two other men, in connection with the theft of an ATM and other crimes. All of them are identified as members or affiliates of a motorcycle gang, deputies say.
The investigation began back in July, when deputies were called to a Westlake bank by an alarm. They found the ATM had been stolen from the parking lot, using a stolen forklift which was left at the scene. Deputies recovered a stolen truck the following day that had the stolen ATM in the bed.
A couple weeks later, deputies were called to another Westlake bank where another ATM had been stolen. This one also involved a stolen forklift and a stolen truck and trailer. Later that same day, they were called to Sulphur where they found a stolen truck on fire, along with the ATM, which also had been burned.
Their investigation determined that the two thefts were related, and that thieves netted more than $150,000 from the ATM thefts.
Detectives were able to identify the following members and affiliates of the Brother East (B*EAST) Outlaw Motorcycle Gang who were responsible for both thefts:
· Melvin Cupp, 46, Spring, Texas (outstanding warrant)
· Brandon Hightower, 33, Humble, Texas (arrested)
· Hosea Owens IV, 28, Alvin, Texas (arrested)
· Joshua Leroy Fontenot, 44, Denham Springs, LA (outstanding warrant)
· Christopher Scott, 44, Lake Jackson, Texas (arrested)
· James Hicks, 33, Huffman, Texas (arrested)
· Faith Breaux, 27, Beaumont, Texas (arrested)
The five people in custody were arrested on Monday, when the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office along with the Houston Police Department, FBI, U.S. Marshal’s Office, ATF, FBI-Beaumont Branch, Beaumont Police Department, Port Arthur Police Department, Beaumont Fire & Medical, Texas Department of Criminal Justice Officer of Inspector General, Harris County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Bureau of Prisons and Texas DPS worked together to apprehend them.
They were all booked with theft of a motor vehicle over $25,000; theft of a motor vehicle $5,000 to $25,000; 2 counts of simple criminal damage to property $1,000 to $25,000; theft less than $5,000 over $1,000; 2 counts of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle; obstruction of justice; simple arson; 3 counts of criminal trespassing; 4 counts of unauthorized entry of a place of business; 4 counts of theft over $25,000; 4 counts of simple criminal damage to property; unauthorized entry of a critical infrastructure; and racketeering. Judge David Ritchie set Breaux’s bond at $263,000 and all other bonds at $600,000.
The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office is asking the public for assistance in locating Cupp and Fontenot. If anyone knows of their whereabouts, they are asked to call CPSO at (337) 491-3605 or Crime Stoppers at (337) 439-2222. If anyone is harboring or assisting these fugitives in any way, they may be arrested and charged accordingly.
CPSO Lieutenants Ed Borda, James Leubner, and Detectives Greg Nall, Hollan Dyer, Kardel Guidry, Austin Peloquin, Warner Levy, Finn Carlton, Joshua Couch, and Bradley Grant were the investigators on these cases.