EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Two alleged thieves are accused of stealing $275 in glass smoking pipes from a store before allegedly causing a four-car crash in the Northeast on Sunday, according to the El Paso Police Department.
A complaining witness is asking authorities to press charges for the alleged theft on behalf of the Montana Smoke Shop at 4323 Montana Ave, according to an affidavit.
Eric Gomez, 26, and 21-year-old Pedro Vale, both of Chaparral, are accused of aggravated robbery in the Northeast incident. An officer in full police uniform reportedly saw Vale run from the smoke store on Gateway North and Montana get into a Chevrolet Geo Prism on Sunday morning. The officer pursued the two, suspecting criminal activity.
Police claim five glass smoking pipes totaling an amount of $275 had been stolen from the Smoke Shop.
The car that the suspects were in accelerated, running a red light at the intersection of Gateway Boulevard and Dyer Street, police say. The vehicle collided with a Honda CRV, leading to three other cars being caught in the collision. Police initially reported a five-car collision.
Police say the Honda CRV collided with a Toyota Corolla after being hit. The 52-year-old driver of the Toyota, Marco Carrillo, suffered life-threatening injuries.
Carrillo was taken to University Medical Center and was diagnosed with a serious traumatic brain injury and put on a mechanical ventilation system to assist with respiration. He is considered to be in critical condition.
Vale was arrested and booked in the El Paso County Detention Facility. Gomez remains in the hospital with injuries. Both will have bonds set at $500,000.
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