FERRIS — Swift actions taken by two Ferris Police officers in the apprehension of a burglary suspect were recently recognized by the city.
Ferris Police Chief Eddie Salazar honored officers John DeLeon and Allen Torres with a commendation after the two responded to a burglary alarm at about 2:30 a.m. on Aug.12 in the 600 block of South Central Street.
“Officer Torres and I were on shift that day. Dollar General is not a usual alarm that goes off, so we went straight over there. As we approached Central Avenue, we saw some tail lamps in the distance leaving the parking lot. That is unusual because the workers don’t leave that late,” DeLeon said. “We drove straight into the parking lot. We quickly notified dispatch that the front door was open and to get another cover unit to come up to clear the building to make sure that there was nobody left in there while we went ahead and pursued the suspect vehicle.”
DeLeon continued by stating the officers then went southbound on Central Avenue and caught up with the car. The officers activated their emergency lights in an attempt to pull the vehicle over. At first, the driver of the vehicle complied with the officers request to stop but later changed his mind.
“We notified dispatch that he was not stopping and initiated a pursuit. It was not a high rate of speed. He got back on the service road and drove for about a quarter of a mile and attempted to get back on the highway going up the hill,” DeLeon stated. “He got stuck and he exited his vehicle and at that point, and he fled on foot. It was not very far maybe about 25 yards or so. He tried to conceal himself in some high grass and shrubs.”
DeLeon explained that the officers drew their weapons and ordered the suspect not to move. He was taken into custody by Torres. Upon the search of the suspect’s vehicle burglary tools and merchandise from the store was found inside.
The suspect was later identified as Alex Fowler, 38. The Fort Worth resident has been charged with burglary of a building, and evading arrest or detention.
According to the online records from the Wayne McCollum Detention Center, Fowler is held on charges of expired registration, speeding greater than 10 percent above the limit and violating a promise to appear from the Hurst Police Department. He is also being held on charges of speeding and a window tint violation. As of Tuesday, he remained in custody at the detention center with bonds totaling $40,981.50.
Torres, who had only been with the department for three months, was undergoing field training by DeLeon at the time of the call.
“I was a little bit nervous because you don’t know what is going to happen,” Torres said. “I was not expecting to be recognized. This is just another duty that we have to do. It is nice to be appreciated.”
DeLeon shared Torres' thoughts about the call and agreed that they were just doing their job to keep residents safe.
Salazar stated that he is proud of the diligence shown by DeLeon and Torres.
“It is great because, with alarm calls, 99 percent of them are false alarms. Officers tend to get complacent. These guys didn’t act like that. They treated it like an actual burglary in progress," Salazar said. "Until you get there and know otherwise that is how every officer should react.”
Salazar also thanked Ellis County Sheriff’s Office Deputies Robert Anderson and Travis Huckaby for their assistance on the call.