Killeen Police Participates in “Officer on a Train” Event

The Killeen Police Department and BNSF Railway will be conducting  an  “Officer  on  the  Train”  event  in  support  of  International  Level  Crossing Awareness Day on Tuesday, June 11, 2019, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.  The intent of these activities is to give Police Officers an opportunity to approach a crossing from the locomotive engineer’s perspective.  In addition to having an officer on the train, other officers will be on hand to issue citations to those drivers and pedestrians who disregard the railroad warning devices.

Texas law requires motorists to stop no closer than 15 feet or farther than 50 feet from the nearest rail if; a clearly visible signal, a crossing gate or barrier is lowered, or flagger warns of the approach of a train.  Motorists must also stop if the warning barriers are being lowered, are already down  or  are  being  opened, and  must  remain  stopped until  the  barriers  are  fully opened.

Since 1977, Texas Operation Lifesaver has been working to spread the safety message throughout the state by educating the public through free presentations and other safety activities.  Due to the number of crossings and track miles in the state, Texas has a high number of collisions resulting in fatalities and injuries. However, we still need to get all motorists to think about safety when they approach a crossing. People should “LOOK, LISTEN and LIVE!”

Trespassing is being on railroad property or around train tracks without the railroads’ permission. Jogging, walking on the track or crossing at other than designated rail crossings is also trespassing.   Texas has the highest number of trespassing incidents resulting in either injury or death. Pedestrians should “STAY OFF, STAY AWAY and STAY ALIVE!”

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

KPD Investigates a Murder on Greenlee

Officers were dispatched to a 911 call in reference to a shooting victim in the 4700 block of Greenlee Drive on Saturday, June 8, 2019, at approximately 4:14 a.m.  Upon the officers’ arrival, they located a male suffering from a gunshot wound.  Officers’ immediately started to perform life saving measures until paramedics arrived.

The victim, 29 year-old Kevin Lebriant Thomas, succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased at 5:02 a.m. by Justice of the Peace Daryl Peters. He ordered an autopsy to be performed at the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences in Dallas.

This incident continues to be investigated and information will be released as it becomes available.

Detectives with the Criminal Investigation Division, Homicide Unit are asking anyone who has information about this Murder, to contact Crime Stoppers at 254-526-TIPS (8477) or go online at www.bellcountycrimestoppers.com.  You can also download the P3Tips App for IOS or Android and give an anonymous tip.  All information is confidential and anonymous and if your tip leads to the arrest of the person responsible, you could be eligible to receive a reward up to $1,000 in cash.

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

Texas Rangers Complete Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation

The Texas Rangers have completed an investigation into an officer-involved shooting.   On February 27, 2019, the Killeen Police Department served a search warrant at 215 West Hallmark Avenue and during this operation, James Reed was killed in an armed confrontation with Killeen police officers.

Per standard department protocol, the Texas Rangers were requested to conduct a thorough, non-biased investigation of the officer-involved shooting.  The investigation revealed that projectiles were fired into the back of the residence. While these rounds did not result in any injuries, they were not in compliance with the planned operation.

Anthony Custance, who was a member of the Killeen Police Department Tactical Response Unit, was ultimately identified as the responsible party despite deceptive conduct and attempts to interfere with the progress of the investigation, including tampering with his rifle and ammunition. The results of the investigation were forwarded to the Bell County District Attorney’s Office for criminal prosecution of the former Killeen police officer.

The Killeen Police Department began an internal investigation into Custance’s actions.  Custance resigned during the course of these investigations.

On Wednesday, June 5, 2019, the Texas Rangers presented their entire investigation to the Grand Jury.  No further investigation or action will be made by the Grand Jury in connection with the execution of the search warrant.  The Grand Jury did return an indictment against Anthony Custance for Tampering with Evidence.

On Thursday, June 6, 2019, Anthony Custance turned himself into the Bell County Jail and was arraigned by Justice of the Peace Cliff Coleman who set his bond at $100,000.

“Killeen Police Department has a very clear code of ethics, and this officer’s actions during and after the incident were unacceptable,” said Chief Charles Kimble. “Public trust is paramount to law enforcement, and unethical behavior within the department will not be tolerated.”

The Killeen Police Department would like to thank the community for its support and patience while these investigations were completed.

 

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

KPD Investigates a Hit Run Pedestrian Crash on Becker

Officers responded to the 1600 block of Becker Drive at approximately 10:55 p.m., on Saturday, June 1, 2019, after receiving a 911 call that a pedestrian had been hit by a vehicle.  Upon the officers’ arrival, they located a white male lying in the roadway.  He was immediately airlifted to Baylor Scott and White in Temple with life threatening injuries.

The preliminary investigation revealed that the pedestrian was traveling northbound on Becker Drive with his bicycle and trailer.  An unknown SUV, dark in color, also traveling northbound on Becker Drive, struck the pedestrian.  The suspect vehicle fled the scene.

The Killeen Police Department Traffic Unit are asking anyone who may have information about the suspect vehicle involved in this Hit and Run crash to contact Crime Stoppers at 254- 526- TIPS (8477) or go online at www.bellcountycrimestoppers.com.  You can also give an anonymous tip by downloading the P3tips app for IOS and Android.  All information is confidential and if your tip leads to the arrest of the person(s) responsible for this Hit and Run, you could be eligible for a reward up to $1,000 in cash.

The Killeen Police Department Traffic Unit continues to investigate this Hit and Run Crash and information will be released as it becomes available.

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

Retired KISD Teacher Arrested

Killeen Police received information that a retired kindergarten teacher from Peebles Elementary School allegedly engaged in inappropriate conduct with a student during the 2016-17 school year.

Through the investigation, detectives with the Criminal Investigation Division, Special Victims Unit, discovered that a juvenile victim disclosed that Mr. Leonardo Casias, had inappropriate physical contact with the student.

This case was reviewed by the Bell County District Attorney’s Office and on Tuesday, May 28, 2019, a complaint was returned charging Leonardo Casias with Indecency with a Child Sexual Contact.  Justice of the Peace Clifford Coleman issued a warrant for his arrest and on Thursday, May 30, 2019, Casias was arrested by the Poteet Police Department and was transported to the Atascosa County Jail.

We would like to thank the Bell County District Attorney’s Office, the Children’s Advocacy Center of Central Texas, Killeen Independent School District, KISD Police Department, Poteet Police Department and the family involved for assisting with this investigation.

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

Killeen Police Arrest Suspects in CEFCO Assault

On Thursday, April 18, 2019, at approximately 7:23 p.m. officers were dispatched to the CEFCO Convenience Store located at 4011 E. Stan Schlueter Loop in reference to an assault.  Officers’ were told that an unknown female and male were inside the store causing a disturbance.  The victim witnessed the disturbance and exited the store to call 9-1-1 for assistance.  When the suspects exited the store, the male suspect assaulted the victim and both suspects stole his personal property.

Detectives with the Criminal Investigation Division, Violent Crimes Unit, received a crime stoppers tip identifying both suspects.  On Friday, May 24, 2019, this case was reviewed by the Bell County District Attorney’s office and complaints were returned charging 45 year-old Indrel Shawnea Green and 30 year-old Devyone Montrell Green with Robbery.  Warrants were issued by Justice of the Peace Bill Cooke and at approximately 4:00 p.m., both suspects were taken into custody and transported to the Killeen City Jail.  Both suspects were previously charged with Interference with an Emergency Call related to this case.

The Killeen Police Department would like to thank the community for their assistance in this case.

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

Killeen Police K9’s Awarded Protective Vest

Killeen Police Department’s K9 Arco, Merlin and Edy will receive a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. K9 Arco and Merlin’s vest will be embroidered with the sentiment “In memory of K9 Ty, California City Police Department”. K9 Edy’s vest will be embroidered with the sentiment “In memory of K9 Rocco, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police”. Delivery is expected within eight to ten weeks.

IMG_5526

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a 501c (3) charity located in East Taunton, MA whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. The non-profit was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K9 officers. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provided over 3,400 protective vests, in 50 states, through private and corporate donations, at a value of $5.7 million dollars.

The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.

The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K9 is $950.00. Each vest has a value between $1,744 – $2,283 and a five-year warranty, and an average weight of 4-5 lbs. There is an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s throughout the United States. For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, please call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA 02718.

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department

Killeen Police Searching for Elderly Man

Killeen Police need your help locating an elderly man with dementia.

64 year-old, Mario Urbina, was last seen in the 900 block of Hall Street around 4:00 p.m. late this afternoon. He left on foot eastbound towards Nolanville where he resides.

He was last seen wearing a brown hat, like the one in the photo, khaki pants and jacket and Nike shoes. Mario is approximately 5’5” tall and weighs approximately 155 pounds.

Mario is fairly new to the area and his family is concerned.

If you have seen or know the whereabouts of Mario, please call the Killeen Police Department at 254-501-8830.

Killeen Police K9 Awarded Bullet and Stab Protective Vest

Killeen Police Department’s K9 Jaxx will receive a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. K9 Jaxx’s vest is sponsored by Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. 2019 craft fair fundraiser and will be embroidered with the sentiment “In memory of K9 Kilo, Seekonk Police Department, MA”.

K9 Jaxx

Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a 501c (3) charity located in East Taunton, MA whose mission is to provide bullet and stab protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the United States. The non-profit was established in 2009 to assist law enforcement agencies with this potentially lifesaving body armor for their four-legged K9 officers. Since its inception, Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provided over 3,400 protective vests, in 50 states, through private and corporate donations, at a value of $5.7 million dollars.

The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.

The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K9 is $950.00. Each vest has a value between $1,744 – $2,283 and a five-year warranty, and an average weight of 4-5 lbs. There is an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s throughout the United States. For more information or to learn about volunteer opportunities, please call 508-824-6978. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. provides information, lists events, and accepts tax-deductible donations of any denomination at www.vik9s.org or mailed to P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA 02718.

Ofelia Miramontez
Public Affairs
Killeen Police Department