Ofelia Garcia Hunter, Alice Echo-News Journal
One more individual was arrested Thursday in connection with the Third Street raid that resulted in the confiscation of more than $150,000 worth of property and an excess of $300,000 in cash, and police said warrant arrests are in the process for about another five people.
"As of (Thursday), we will be able to clear 15 burglaries of the portion that we seized (Wednesday) night," Bueno said.
Christopher Lee Rutledge, 26, was arrested Thursday at 3:15 p.m. and charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and burglary of a building, police said. He is the second person arrested in what police believe to be a theft ring. Rutledge also faces charges from Nueces County for motion to revoke probation, police said. He remained in the Jim Wells County jail on two $10,000 bonds as of Friday afternoon, jail officials said.
"(Rutledge) was not in the house, but there was some involvement," Bueno said.
During Wednesday's raid in the 300 block of Third Street, police arrested 49-year-old Douglas Nichols as the SWAT team executed a "no-knock" warrant.
Police searched the residence and revealed goods police said were stolen from local residents and businesses such as Sutherlands, Sears and McCoy's. Some of the property included bicycles, generators, lawn equipment, ceiling fans, televisions, a workbench saw and other items. Also seized were several vehicles, including two corvettes and a motorcycle, police said. Currency and coins confiscated at the raid totaled $327,087.12.
Nichols is facing charges of theft over $20,000, unlawful firearms and possession of marijuana and a controlled substance, police said.
His bond was set at $950,000, but on Friday, Nichols went before District Judge Richard Terrell and his request for a bond reduction was granted. Terrell reduced his bond to $150,000. After the reduction trial, Nichols was served with a federal warrant for allegedly possessing unlawful firearms, police said.
Bueno said they would be making more arrests.
"The investigator and agent in charge are in the process of initiating official procedures for other warrants," he said.