'I had to look it up': Man from out-of-town robbed in Houston wasn't aware about 'jugging'

Briana Conner Image
Tuesday, June 13, 2023
Jugging victim from NYC now 'hesitant' to do business in Houston
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A man in Houston for business from New York City said he was followed from a bank and then victimized outside of his hotel in downtown.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Jugging is becoming one of Houston's most common crimes.

Just last week, Eyewitness News reported the police department created a city-wide task force to crack down on thieves following victims leaving banks or high-end stores to rob them.

SEE ALSO: 'Be aware': Houston police create city-wide task force as 'juggings' continue to rise

In this instance, the thieves followed the victim for just about a mile from the bank to a hotel in downtown Houston. The man asked Eyewitness News not to identify him since the suspects haven't been caught.

"Little did I know, between the distance from the car and hotel door, I got jugged," he said.

The victim is seen on surveillance video running after a thief who snatched away an envelope holding thousands of dollars. He said he was in town from New York on a business trip.

Before the morning of May 20, he had no idea about one of Houston's hottest crimes.

"I wasn't even familiar with the term until the police officer said it to me," he said. "I had to look it up."

In a textbook case of jugging, he had made a large withdrawal from the Chase Bank on McGowen and Smith in Midtown. The thieves followed his ride-share for one mile to a downtown hotel on Dallas Street. By the time he noticed them, it was too late.

"I worked really hard for that money, like really hard for months," he said. "I was just so angry to see it, you know, running away. Literally."

SEE ALSO: Camera captures 'patient' suspect breaking into vehicle after following man from bank in N. Houston

He chased after the thief for four blocks, but the criminal eventually hopped in a black Mercedes and got away.

Stephanie Trevino with Team Osiris Martial Arts said the better decision is to be more aware, especially when at a vulnerable spot like a bank. Watching the video of what happened, she said the first red flag was where the Mercedes parked outside the hotel.

"Anybody that blocks you into a situation, whether that's a parking spot, ATM, or anywhere, they mean absolutely harm to you. You have to get away," she said.

She said martial arts teaches how to prevent or get out of dangerous situations. Even though the purple belt has trained for 10 years, she did not recommend fighting.

"I would've just given them the money," she said. "Money is not worth your life."

That's a realization the victim came to as he looks to prevent another robbery by avoiding our city.

"It makes us very hesitant to come back to do business in Houston," he said.

Crime Stoppers of Houston is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrests of the two suspects involved in this crime. Tips can be summitted anonymously.

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