MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas - Neighbors in west Montgomery County say they’re breathing easy, knowing four burglary suspects are behind bars.
Deputies say the 18- and 19-year-old men busted into a woman’s home on Monday, but this is not their first run-in with law enforcement. In fact, they’re familiar faces in the neighborhood.
“Here, you can see one of the cameras that I’ve got,” said Lori Gaskill, pointing out the surveillance equipment she just had installed about a week ago.
Within days, the cameras caught video of a group of four teens. It shows two of the suspects hanging back on the street, while two who walk up and ring the doorbell.
“Should we just leave?” one asks the other before they do walk away from Gaskill’s home.
Deputies say they went next door and broke into that home instead.
“The resident was home. She was a 75-year-old female,” said Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Scott Spencer. “(The victim) alerted authorities that she witnessed those males in her kitchen. She scared them off, then immediately called the sheriff’s office.”
It didn’t take long for deputies to identify Joshua Bustoz, Christopher Cook, Matthew Hynous and James Biddison. Lt. Spencer said the sheriff’s office has been dealing with them for several years.
“They’ve been wreaking havoc on this neighborhood and adjoining neighborhoods for years,” Gaskill said.
Though they’ve been arrested multiple times, neighbors complain Bustoz, Cook, Hynous and Biddison seem to get out of jail quickly.
“We notice that while they’re in jail, we don’t have any car break-ins,” said Durango Creek Property Owners Association President Jeremy Smith.
The Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office said the quick releases are often due to the nature of the crimes committed.
“Many of them are misdemeanor offenses,” said Asst. DA Tyler Dunman. “You’re not talking about being able to get substantial penalty or punishment for those types of offenses. They can’t go to prison.”
That could change, however, after Monday’s alleged burglary. It is a felony crime.
“The range of punishment is up to 20 years in prison for an offense like this, so these individuals are looking at a substantial punishment for their involvement in these activities,” Dunman said.
Neighbors want the district attorney to fight to keep those suspects behind bars.
“We need the district attorney’s office to be tough on these kids,” Smith said.