Source: HPD officer may be linked to $4 million armored car robbery

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A Houston police officer may be linked to an armored car heist that federal investigators believe was an inside job.

Houston police officer Joel Quezada has been relieved of duty. The official word from HPD it's pending an internal affairs investigation linked to criminal allegations. However, sources tell Eyewitness News it's related to multi-million dollar armored car holdup that happened at the University of Houston.

"They jumped out, went to the lady, and told her to get out of the truck," Eyewitness Emilliano Garcia described the heist last December 6.

Students were walking to class when a Loomis armored vehicle servicing an ATM at UH was robbed.

According to federal court documents, Dezmond Edwards, a Loomis employee, provided information that helped Ron Richards, James V. Johnson and Allen B. Roundtree carry out the crime; specifically the government alleges he told them which armored vehicle would be the most productive target.

The one had $4.1 million on board, was driven by a pregnant guard who kept the door unlocked.

"They put a gun to her. She got out," Garcia said.

They got away. They spent some of the money on jewelry cars and appliances but when the feds caught up with them, $3 million was still missing.

Three out of the four defendants pleaded guilty. Only Edwards will stand trial and Quezada, a six-year HPD officer who works in the traffic division, is also in trouble. Quezada was relieved of duty Wednesday night; sources say he is being linked criminally to the heist.

The trial for Edwards was supposed to start last week but has been postponed until January. The other three are waiting to be sentenced.

Quezada has not been charged criminally. The Houston Police Officer's Union tells Eyewitness News Officer Quezada has not contacted them yet for legal representation.
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