Where ARE those missing Houston-area school buses?

by 1389 on October 19, 2007

in 1389 (blog admin), crime, Latin America, school terrorism, security, Texas, vehicles and transportation

School Bus Stop Sign Arm

15 school buses went missing. Where are they now?

Between January and August, 2007, fifteen school buses were stolen from various facilities in the area of Houston, Texas. None of the missing buses were owned by the Houston Independent School District (HISD).

We reported this earlier in Why the rash of Houston-area school bus thefts?

  • Stolen School Buses Raise Eyebrows in Houston

    HOUSTON (Aug. 29, 2007) – Of the 15 school buses that have been reported stolen since January, only two have been recovered, causing local law enforcement to question their disappearance. While authorities are not saying there is a relation to any terrorist activity, they do not disregard the possibility.

  • Numerous Law Enforcement Agencies Collaborate Within Texas on Related Issues, Including Homeland Security

    HOUSTON (Aug. 29, 2007) – As a precautionary measure, schools in the Houston area are being reminded to be extra vigilant when it comes to school bus security. A string of suspicious but unrelated school bus thefts dating back to January have raised some homeland security concerns with law enforcement agencies within the state.

    “We always try to keep tabs on vehicles that could be used to get close in to a target,” said Special Agent Patricia Villafranca, a media representative at the FBI’s Houston branch office. “It was important to remind people who provide security at the schools that just because it’s yellow and it looks like a school bus, don’t let your guard down.”

    Recently, a notice was sent out from Houston Fusion Center that listed the buses that were stolen. According to Dennis Storemski, director of the Houston’s Office of Public Safety and Homeland Security, the notice did not include any commentary.

    “It wasn’t anything specific, it was just a matter of a potential crime pattern,” said Storemski. kids using them or malicious mischief or vandalism. Another possibility is that they could be going to Mexico, due to our proximity to the border. There are a lot of possibilities.”

    The Fusion Center is a collaboration of analysts from the Houston Police Department, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office and the Texas Department of Public Safety. The group is able to discuss issues in real time within the same department in the Houston Emergency Center. According to Special Agent Villafranca, the FBI will also be joining the center soon.

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