LUBBOCK, Texas — Police on Thursday afternoon said David Hampton was taken into custody in Abilene on charges related to the disappearance of Celestino Rodriguez, 79
Police said Hampton, 53, was arrested a few minutes before 2:25 p.m.
Police on Thursday afternoon also said Rodriguez, missing since August 3, has not been located yet. An arrest warrant against two other people in the case — Toby Daughtry and Amanda Blagburn — said Rodriguez was beaten up and left in field.
One more person was still sought in connection with the case. As of the time of this story, no one has been charged directly for Rodriguez’ disappearance or any physical harm he might have suffered.
Garza and Hampton were charged with credit card abuse targeting the elderly. Daughtry and Blagburn were charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.
LPD said late Thursday afternoon, “Hampton surrendered himself at the Police Headquarters Building located at 450 Pecan St, Abilene, TX.”
“Hampton was transported to the Taylor County Detention Center and booked on the felony Debit/Credit Card Abuse warrant. According to the arresting officers, Hampton was taken into custody without incident,” LPD said.
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The narrative text of an arrest warrant against Hampton and Brett Anthony Garza said the following:
SUMMARY (include additional offenses): While investigation missing person case 19-31730, information was obtained from Slaton PD Investigator Steve Dekraker that the missing person, Celestino Rodriguez’s Peoples Bank debit card had been utilized on numerous occasions at multiple retail stores in Lubbock. Dekraker had already obtained video from several of the locations during his missing person investigation. Rodriguez was listed as a missing person on Sunday, August 4th and the last time he had been seen or heard from by family members was on August 3rd at approximately 1000 hours. Family members observed transactions on his debit card beginning at approximately 1425 hours at Walmart 702 West Loop 289. Video was obtained from that location that identified two suspects later identified as David Wayne Hampton and Brett Anthony Garza at the store together. Transactions at Walmart consisted of the following:
ATM withdrawal 302.50 at 1550 hours
Purchase of 244.25 at 1433
Purchase of 118.20 at 1436
Purchase of 259.43 a5 1539 (believed to be Walmart at MSF/Ave Q)
A purchase was made at Dollar General 5004 34th Street for the amount of 77.69 at 1458 hours.
A purchase was made at United Market Street 19th St/Quaker Ave for the amount of 76.06 at 1512 hours.
Purchases were made at Walgreens at 602 Ave Q for the following amounts: 22.95 at 1550 hours, 22.15 at 1552 hours, 33.52 at 1552 hours and 22.64 at 153 hours.
Surveillance video was obtained from Walmart, United Market Street, Walgreens and Dollar General. With the exception of Dollar General, Garza and Hampton can be seen on surveillance video at each location and appear to be working in conjunction with one another and benefiting from the unauthorized use of the debit card. Video was obtained from Peoples Bank from the ATM machine at 34th St/Memphis Ave. The video shows Hampton utilizing the debit card for an unauthorized transaction.
Although on certain videos the footage is not perfectly clear, the persons utilizing the debit card for these unauthorized transactions are wearing clothing that is the same and the subjects are driving a light tan colored Suburban that has been identified as belonging to Brett Garza’s girlfriend. Garza can be identified as the driver during many of the unauthorized transactions.
The victim of this offense is 79 years of age and is classified as Elderly.