KWTX - Our Town Belton - Headlines

Two Men Arrested In Hotel Parking Lot Mugging

KILLEEN (February 25, 2010)—Killeen police arrested two men Wednesday after an early-morning robbery in the parking lot of the Residence Inn and Suites at 400 E. Central Texas Expressway where a woman said an armed man wearing a hooded jacket demanded money from her and then escaped in a light-colored vehicle that another man was driving.

An officer spotted a car matching the description of the getaway vehicle in the area of Trimmier Road and Lowes Boulevard and officers pulled the car over in the 200 block of East Jasper.

The two men inside were detained and the victim later identified them as the robbers.

Joshua Kalani, 21, and Jason Whitney Laird, 27, were charged with aggravated robbery.

They were ordered held in lieu of bonds of $100,000 each.

The robbery was the latest in a series of six holdups, the first of which was Tuesday.

It’s not clear whether all six are related.

Links in the Chain of Robberies?
Police agencies have been pooling their investigations in an attempt to link the robberies.

"We definitely have leads with these cases," Temple Police Lt. Edward Best said on Wednesday.

"We are in contact with other agencies and are comparing our notes and seeing what, if there is a possibility if these are related," Best said.

Robbery No. 1
The first robbery happened in the parking lot of Killeen's Hilton Garden Inn where Killeen police spokeswoman Carroll Smith said a man armed with a gun walked into the lobby at around 8:50 p.m. Tuesday and demanded money.

No one was injured but the robber got away.

Killeen police are looking for a black man who may be in his 20s.

Robbery No. 2
The next robbery happened 10 minutes later, a around 9 p.m. Tuesday in the parking lot of the Barnes & Noble in the Market Heights Shopping Center in Harker Heights where an armed robber approached a man and demanded his valuables.

The intended victim quickly drove away, but saw the would-be robber run to a car parked nearby.

The man provided a description of both the car and the robber, police said.

Robbery No. 3
About 30 minutes later, at around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, someone drove up beside a car in the parking lot of the McDonald's on 6th Avenue in Belton, got out and demanded money from the vehicle's occupant.

No weapon was displayed in the robbery and no one was injured.

Robbery No. 4
Then sometime before 10 p.m. three 17-year-olds were robbed after a car pulled up and three of the four men got out.

One pulled a gun and demanded money.

Robbery No. 5
The fifth robbery occurred just after 3:30 a.m. Wednesday in the parking lot of the Walgreens store on 31st Street in Temple.

A delivery truck driver told police he was approached by a man with a gun who demanded money.

The would-be robber left empty-handed, however.



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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Kevin Location: Cen Tex on Feb 26, 2010 at 07:15 AM
    KWTX, any photos of the suspects yet?
  • by Mr.T Location: Temple on Feb 26, 2010 at 05:36 AM
    We do not need any more cops on force.We need our cops stop trying to hide out behind Buildind and local coffee shops and be seen on partol more. I from Dallas area those cops up their don't out like crook do.It is well kown more visual Police department are the less crime rate are.
  • by judy Location: waco on Feb 25, 2010 at 05:36 PM
    Does anyone else think our police agencies need their budgets increased? More people equals more crime. Demand that your city councils and county commissioners put the money where it's needed - salaries and equipment for law enforcement. Killeen police must wait for a car before they can begin their shift! How sad is that?
  • by Jon Location: Killeen on Feb 25, 2010 at 05:26 PM
    I kind of agree with jb from Waco. The courts in this country have become so liberal they'll grant bail, at a greatly reduced rate, to these two punks and before this even comes to trial will probably be arrested again for the same thing. Too bad they didn't resist and the cops just shoot'em.
  • by jb Location: waco on Feb 25, 2010 at 03:34 PM
    These clowns will be out and back on the street before dinner tonight. Thats why they need to be shot.
  • by Someone Location: Near-Here on Feb 25, 2010 at 12:40 PM
    I'll be glad when every 'Legal' Citizen starts carrying a loaded gun and knows how to use it!! Agree on shoot to kill!! PERIOD!!! And hopefully the businesses will let their employees do the same!! The Law/Penal System has to be changed!!
  • by anonymous Location: Austin on Feb 25, 2010 at 11:07 AM
    Agree with dude. People are going to start taking care of these sorry criminals themselves and you can't blame them when these low-lifes have no regard for anyone or anything. The police have their hands full and Waco, Killeen and even Temple seem to have had these low-lifes move into their area.
  • by Jerry Location: Gatesville on Feb 25, 2010 at 10:41 AM
    I agree that a victim should shoot the perpetrators. Make sure you shoot to kill, too. Dead men tell no lies. These types of criminals are not rehabbed.
  • by dude Location: texas on Feb 25, 2010 at 10:04 AM
    the fall of a once great nation is a sad thing to watch. sooner or later the good people in this country will have had enough, and will take it back by force.
  • by Scorpion Location: Temple on Feb 25, 2010 at 09:42 AM
    Two days ago some lady I know asked why I have a CHL and carry a .40 cal. I referred her to this website to read about all the robberies.
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