Suspect charged in armed robbery spree

AUSTIN (KXAN) - At least one of the men believed to be behind a spree of armed robberies in Austin has been arrested.

Marcello Christian Douglas, 32, was arrested on an aggravated robbery charge following a July 18 robbery at the Texaco on South Pleasant Valley Road.

According to an arrest report, Douglas and two other men were inside the store for 20 minutes before the robbery took place. A clerk told police the robber didn’t cover his face until he returned again, wearing the same clothes, and a piece of cloth over his face. The clerk said the man was carrying a gun in his left hand and demanded money.

Another employee said the gunman fired a shot in the store and then pointed it at the clerk. After getting the money, according to the arrest report, Douglas left. The victims saw part of the license plate and called it into police.

An Austin Police officer pulled over a 1997 Buick Le Sabre with a license plate that partially matched. Using a photo from the store’s security cameras, the officer realized it was likely Douglas.

Despite that arrest, officers believe there are other suspects at large.

Austin police have surveillance video and believe as many as four black or mixed-race men in their early to mid-20s are responsible for the crimes. Authorities say one or two of the men commit the robbery while the others serve as lookouts or drive the getaway vehicle.

The main suspects is a black or mixed-race man in his early to mid-20s who is about 5 feet 7 inches tall with a thin build. Police say he has cornrows or braids with a unique hairline. APD did not have photos of the suspects to release to the public.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Det. David Gann in APD’s Robbery Unit at (512) 974-5778 or Robbery Unit Detectives at (512) 974-5270.

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