17-year-olds arrested in series of robberies along bike trail in Third Ward, Houston mayor says

Lileana Pearson Image
Tuesday, June 6, 2023
2 arrests made in series of bike trail robberies in Third Ward
EMBED <>More Videos

Two arrests have been made in a series of robberies along the Columbia Bike Trail that are believed to be the work of the same criminals.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A series of robberies along the Columbia Bike Trail are believed to be the work of the same criminals, and on Tuesday, Mayor Sylvester Turner said two of those suspects had been arrested.

The Houston Police Department announced 17-year-olds Deion Christian and Willie Carroll have been arrested.

There have been at least five reports of people getting robbed since last month.

HPD Executive Chief Larry Satterwhite said he believes the first attack happened on May 22. ABC13 spoke with a victim who asked to conceal his identity out of fear for his safety. He said he was knocked off his bike at about 11:30 a.m. near Anita Street.

"I was pushed and pushed hard and landed on the ground. (I) propped myself up on my elbow, and within seconds, one of them had pulled a gun on me just a couple of feet from my face, and I knew that the others were behind me," he said.

He told ABC13 the teens asked for his cell phone password and counted down as he struggled to share it - out of breath.

Turner had a message for young people.

"I just want to send a message to many of our young individuals, especially our young males between the ages of 16 to 24. Do not do things that are going to really jeopardize your future. Be very careful who you're associating with, especially as we enter this summer. There is no reason for you to feel like you have to victimize anybody, hurt anybody, rob anybody, shoot anybody," Turner said.

The mayor said he expects more arrests to be made.

As summer schedules ramp up, city leaders are encouraging people to continue using the trail, saying additional patrols will be in the area.

"You'll see officers out on the bike trails, on e-bikes, on ATVs, and some of them you won't see it will be undercover," Satterwhite said.

One trail user told ABC13 he tries to pick responsible places to run and always keeps an eye on his surrounding.

"You kind of get this feeling of being uncomfortable. When that starts to happen, that's when I'm running a little bit faster and trying to get out of that area a little bit sooner," Ryan Weyl said.

Authorities encourage residents to carry pepper spray or a whistle for safety. They suggest using the trails with a partner or letting someone know where you are.

For more news updates, follow Lileana Pearson on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

SEE RELATED STORY: Houston police launch operation after 5 cyclists attacked, at least 1 shot, on trail in Third Ward