AUSTIN (KXAN) - An Austin Police Officer was recovering from surgery Tuesday after he received a knee injury during a shootout with a suspected robber the day before.
Meanwhile, Police Chief Art Acevedo said the suspect, 51-year-old Mark Fruge, is accused of robbing an armored guard, shooting at two police officers, car jacking and kidnapping a by standard.
"Just to let the community know that he has an extensive criminal history one that would indicate that he has definitely not learned and doesn't belong out here in the community," Police Chief Art Acevedo said Tuesday afternoon in a press conference.
The charges against Fruge
- Two counts of aggravated robbery
- Three counts of attempted capital murder
- One count of aggrevated kidnapping
Police said that about 3:10 p.m. on Monday, Fruge followed an armored car guard into Fallas Discount Store at Capital Plaza at 5431 N. Interstate 35.
After the guard received a deposit from the store clerk, Fruge showed a 10mm semi-automatic pistol and demanded money and the guard's gun.
Acevedo said the female cashier behind the counter started to scream and the suspect shot three rounds at her. She was not injured.
He then ran off to his car, but a witness in the parking lot followed him, called 911 and kept police up to date with the information.
"That witness continued to give updates which was critical in the ability of our department to actually come up to the suspect and actually engaging him and at a later date we will recognize that person in a manner they feel comfortable with," said Acevedo.
APD said about 14 minutes later, two officers caught up to suspect and there was a shootout between he and the officers at the strip center at 7112 Bluestein Blvd.
"It's important to know both officers were able to return fire, however the suspect was not struck," Acevedo said. "It's also important to know that the suspect did not just shoot at one officer, he shot at both officers and he shot at both police vehicles, striking both police vehicles."
Officer Roosevelt Granderson, who has been on the force for four years, underwent surgery. Glass from the shattered window went into his knee. Acevadeo said doctors were able to remove the glass, but has a fractured knee. He said Officer Granderson should be out by tomorrow.
Officer Aaron Pippin was the other officer involved. He's been on the force for five and a half years.
Police said Fruge had ran off and took another victim's car in the 16700 block of Manor Road and force that person at gun point to drive them to his apartment in the 9300 block of East Highway 290. That's where police arrested him.
During the press conference Acevedo applauded his department for the way they handled the situation despite what critics may say.
"So for the community of 10 that always likes to point out when there's something that goes wrong I want to point out the facts, and the facts are that our officers are second to none and the restraint and professionalism demonstrated yesterday by taking that suspect into custody without the discharge of a single additional round speaks volumes to training, the character and the professionalism of our men and women," said Acevedo.
Police also found the security guard's gun in the man's car. The chief explained that usually armored guards travel in pairs, the department is still investigating where the other person was.
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