LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - An officer with the Lufkin ISD Police Department arrested four young men in connection to allegations that they stole a golf cart, two Kawasaki mules, and several cases of Gatorade and water from Lufkin High School on April 22.
Rafael Bahena Jr., 17, Omar Casas, Sergio Eduardo Lazaro, 19, and Gabriel Aaron Rosales, 18, all of Lufkin, were booked into the Angelina County Jail on Monday. Each of them was charged with third-degree felony engaging in organized criminal activity.
All four of them were released a day later after they posted individual bail amounts of $5,000.
According to the arrest affidavit for Bahena, the thefts occurred on April 22. The suspects are accused of taking an EZGO golf cart, a green Kawasaki mule, and a purple Kawasaki mule from the Abe Martin Stadium at Lufkin High School. The golf cart and mules had a combined value of about $21,500.
At about 4:32 a.m. on the morning of April 22, the high school's surveillance camera system captured a silver Jeep with a large rack with lights on it. The driver has all the lights on and drives around the school, the affidavit stated.
On the video, the Jeep pulls up to the gate where the golf cart is stored, and someone gets out and moves several orange traffic cones, the affidavit stated.
On April 28, the Lufkin ISD PD officer got a call from a Lufkin High School administrator, who said he was driving behind a Jeep that matched the description of the one in the surveillance video and gave the vehicle's license plate.
When the Lufkin ISD PD officer ran the license plate, it came back as belonging to Lazaro. At that point, two Lufkin ISD PD officers went to Lazaro's place of employment, and he allegedly admitted to the theft. Lazaro admitted to driving the Jeep, but he said he didn't drive the golf cart, the affidavit stated.
Lazaro told the Lufkin ISD PD officers that Casas drove the golf cart from the high school, the affidavit stated. They then drove to Casas' house and picked him up, so that Lazaro and Casa could show them where the golf cart was, the affidavit stated.
They directed the officers to a field off of Ruth Street in the Cedar Grove community. When they got there, they walked the officers to the golf cart and the purple mule, the affidavit stated. The mule was identified as one that belongs to the Sideliners.
While the Lufkin ISD PD officers were driving Lazaro and Casas to the jail, Lazaro told them that the other mule was located a short distance away, the affidavit stated. That mule, which belongs to the Lufkin Band Boosters, was recovered as well.
Further investigation revealed that the drivers of the other two vehicles were Bahena and Rosales, the affidavit stated.
Bahena admitted to riding on the mules in the woods, but he did not admit to driving the vehicles from Lufkin High School to where they were recovered, the affidavit stated. Rosales allegedly admitted to driving the purple mule from the high school to where it was found.
Rosales, Lazaro, Casas told police that Lazaro drove the Jeep, Rosales drove the purple mule, Casas drove the golf cart, and Bahena drove the green mule from the high school, the affidavit stated. The vehicles were found on a property owned by the family of one of the suspects.
When police officers walked the property, they also found several cases of Gatorade and water that belonged to the Lufkin Band Boosters, the affidavit stated. The drinks had been located behind a locked door at Abe Martin Stadium, and the suspects kicked open the door to steal them, the affidavit stated.
"This offense involves burglary of a building and theft," the affidavit stated.