July 24, 2012 - **NOTE TIME OF NEWS AVAILABILITY**
Investigators in the Houston Police Department's Major Offenders Division are asking for the public's assistance in identifying one suspect and locating three others charged in "smash and grab" jewelry store and pawn shop heists throughout the state of Texas and the Houston area.
The three known suspects are identified as Nicholas Bernard Payne (b/m, DOB: 8-5-78), Desmond Demonte O'Quinn (b/m, DOB: 9-16-93) and Philemon Lee Denton (b/m, DOB: 1-1-72). Investigators are hoping someone can help identify a fourth suspect, known only as "Roy," who took part in the heists. All are charged with engaging in organized criminal acitvity in the 183rd State District Court.
Photos of the four suspects are attached to this news release. In addition, surveillance video of the suspects committing a robbery at an Austin pawn shop and then being paid for the stolen jewelry is posted on the HPD YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/nlfxoV0Wwbc. The male known as "Roy" is wearing a large white hat and counting money. His photo is shown at the 3:20 mark of the video.
HPD Major Offenders, Robbery and Narcotics Divisions' officers have been working with Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) agents in investigations into what are known as "smash and grab" robberies at area jewelry stores. Undercover operations were conducted and individuals involved in robberies of area Ben Bridge Jewelry stores were identified. The three males with their faces and arms concealed with dark clothing and hoodies used sledge hammers to smash display cases.
The lengthy investigation revealed the suspects were turning over stolen jewelry to three individuals, all brothers, at Mosquedas Jewelry at 8205 Broadway. Two individuals at that store were arrested and a large amount of assorted jewelry items stolen in Austin were recovered. They were Hugo Mosqueda (H/m, DOB: 5-17-79) and Esequiel Mosqueda (H/m, DOB: 3-12-75). A third individual, Julio Cruz Mosqueda (H/m, DOB: 6-9-73), was later taken into custody. All three were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity, posted bonds and are awaiting court appearances.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of suspects Payne, O'Quinn and Denton, or the identity of the fourth suspect ("Roy") is urged to contact the HPD Major Offenders Division at 713-308-3100 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.
At 2 p.m. TODAY (Tuesday, July 24), an investigator in the Major Offenders Division will be available to answer questions in this case in the Media Briefing room on the first floor of HPD Headquarters at 1200 Travis.
Known only as "Roy"
Desmond Demonte O'Quinn
Nicholas Bernard Payne
Philemon Lee Denton
For additional information, please contact the HPD Public Affairs Division at 713-308-3200.