Group arrested after allegedly trying to smash open North Side ATM

Investigators looking at possible connection to other crimes

At least four people are in custody facing criminal charges in connection with the attempted burglary of an ATM on the city’s North Side Friday morning.

SAN ANTONIO – At least four people are in custody facing criminal charges in connection with the attempted burglary of an ATM on the city’s North Side Friday morning.

San Antonio police tracked down the suspects as they allegedly tried to run from the scene of the crime in the 5200 block of Blanco Road.

Police say they caught up with some of them in a car in the middle of a nearby neighborhood, on Oak Place.

Police caught a carful of suspects on Oak Place in a nearby neighborhood. (KSAT 12 News)

They say the group had used a stolen truck with a chain attached to try to either rip the housing off the money machine, or take the entire machine off its perch.

A sturdy metal bar, apparently installed by the bank that owns the ATM, may have acted to slow down the crime.

Police say a passerby also noticed them around 4 a.m. and called 911.

“I was shocked because, I mean, who would’ve thought that they were using (the truck) for this purpose,” said Gracie Castillo, whose husband owns the stolen truck.

The owners of the stolen truck used in the attempted ATM burglary were able to reclaim their vehicle. (KSAT 12 News)

Castillo showed up later to retrieve the recovered vehicle.

She said she had noticed it missing from their driveway across town early Wednesday morning and reported it stolen.

Early Friday, she got a call from police, telling her the truck had been found.

She says she was surprised to find it had only minor damages.

The machine was left with cracks and holes after the attempted burglary. (KSAT 12 News)

The ATM didn’t fare as well.

It was left with big cracks. The electronic screen also had been changed to tell customers the machine was not working.

Police say it did not appear the suspects were able to open it or get any cash from it.

They say detectives are looking into whether the group may have struck before.

READ MORE: Drag marks on ground lead police to ATM stolen from North Side bank

According to a sergeant on scene, they are specifically looking at a crime that KSAT 12 News covered in April.

At that time, a group of people had managed to remove an ATM from its perch near Thousand Oaks and Jones-Maltsberger Road.

They dragged it across a parking lot, then abandoned it outside a 99 Cents Only Store store.

Police said at that time that they had detained the driver of a truck related to that crime as a “person of interest.”

However, they did not make any other arrests in that case.


About the Authors:

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.