East Austin restaurant la Barbecue has been robbed a third time in less than three months, according to a post on the restaurant's Instagram.
In the post, the restaurant included photos of what appeared to be a man exiting a minivan from surveillance footage.
"This guy pulled up in a car full of stuff… he ripped our gate open and stole a couple empty kegs," the post said. "The ring system scared him off so he did not venture back into the area. PLEASE EVERYONE ON THE EAST SIDE BE CAREFUL!!! This guy goes back into his car to grab something before he goes in. I am hoping he won’t be back!!"
The robbery comes as many restaurant and food truck owners have been on guard from recent break-ins. East Austin cheesesteak truck R&B's Steak and Fries has also been robbed three times in around three months, according to owner Kris Elliott. Elliot said the truck was last robbed around a month and a half ago.
"When the weather gets cold, it seems like these things start to happen more often," Elliott said. "We're just happy no one got hurt."
Additionally, he said all 5 of the food trucks in their lot have experienced burglaries. The landlord of the space is taking action by investing in alarm and camera systems. "Been very tough dealing with this problem as us small business owners are just trying to survive during the pandemic," Elliott said.
And it's not just in East Austin. North Austin restaurants Eldorado Cafe and Chez Zee Bistro were both broken into and robbed on the weekend of Jan. 8, while over a dozen food truck robberies and break-ins were reported in the latter half of 2021.
Some, like Chez Zee's Deborah Velasco, wonder if the understaffed Austin Police Department's decision to no longer respond to non-emergency calls is part of the problem. Xose Velasco, owner of East Austin's Discada, said owners are keeping their guard up in the wake of the robberies as he was robbed twice within a month of reopening in November 2021.
"We try to keep the lights on," Velasco said. "We're a little bit more careful."
The Parks and Wildlife Department is investigating the killing of at least six deer with a crossbow in Northwest Austin's Great Hills.
Four deer have been found dead and two others haven't been found, TPWD reports, after residents of the neighborhood saw injured deer walking around with injuries, with some animals reported with arrows still in them.
A resident-led GoFundMe page said the arrows were "blunt-ended, target practice arrows, not broadhead hunting arrows" and that the deer were shot between Dec. 10 and Dec. 27, 2021. But some members of a Facebook group dedicated to solving the case estimate that the toll is much higher, with resident Daniel Wilson claiming to have found up to nine deer shot by arrows as early as September 2021.
"I'm a hunter myself but I hate to see game going to waste and lives being ended for no reason and against the law," Wilson said in a post. "People like this make it harder for those of us who are hunting lawfully and ethically and they should be held responsible."
Anyone with information on the killings could receive two separate rewards—including nearly $4,000 from the GoFundMe so far and $1,000 through TPWD's Operation Game Thief investigation.
Game warden Scott Jurk told KXAN he believes someone on foot or driving a vehicle may be behind the killings, a crime that includes felony and misdemeanor crimes.
“In Texas, if you kill a whitetail deer without landowner permission, that is a felony,” Jurk said. “So, if the landowner pursues charges we can file felony cases. Hunting deer at night, hunting deer from a vehicle or on a public road, those are all class A misdemeanors so they all hold jail time.”
TPWD has some leads but is also requesting that Great Hills residents check their video cameras for more evidence.
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Austin police are now investigating two double homicides and a separate stabbing death after a "violent weekend" left five dead in the city.
The latest victim in a Sunday night shooting was declared dead Monday afternoon after they were sent to the hospital in critical condition. The shooting left another dead at the scene near the I-35 Frontage Road near Delmar Avenue at around 10:30 p.m. Sunday. Both deaths come after a double homicide and separate stabbing death that took place on Saturday.
No suspect description or arrest has been made for the Saturday night stabbing. The suspect for the Saturday double homicide has been identified as 31-year-old Yong Yoon Kim, who called police after shooting and killing 19-year-olds Nathan Limoge and Christopher Rivers at 11:45 a.m. in a parking lot at Burnet Road & Anderson Lane.
APD News Release: Homicide Investigation at 7797 Burnet Rd. - https://t.co/yq8WrxBqRx pic.twitter.com/pjQ4AKVWny
— Austin Police Department (@Austin_Police) January 24, 2022
Kim told police that he acted in self-defense, but police have charged Kim with capital murder and booked him into the Travis County Jail with no bond due to "contrary accounts" from eyewitnesses on the scene.
Hours earlier, the first homicide of the weekend occurred when Michael Martin O'Brien was stabbed and found by Austin-Travis County EMS with life-threatening injuries on the 400 block of E. 6th St. at around 2:47 a.m. Saturday. O'Brien died due to multiple stab wounds later that morning.
Police have been told that the stabbing occurred after a fight broke out in a nearby alley. No suspect has been identified, but homicide detectives have been told by several witnesses that a white man wearing a black jacket, blue jeans and a red baseball cap fled the scene as police arrived.
“Unfortunately, this has been a rather violent weekend here in Austin that has resulted in multiple homicides having occurred over the weekend,” APD's Michael Bullock said told the media Monday.
Before this weekend, Austin had three reported homicides for 2022. Now, the number has risen to eight, higher than the total for all of January 2021. Austin had five homicides for all of January 2021 in a year that saw record-breaking homicide numbers and near-record homicide rates.
Police are asking anyone with information or videos of the incidents to email email@example.com, call the Crime Stoppers tip line at 512-472-8477 or use the Crime Stoppers app. Tips can be anonymous, and police said those that give information that leads to an arrest for the Saturday stabbing could receive a reward of up to $1,000.
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