One of three suspects in downtown attacks arrested



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Posted on December 24, 2013 at 7:14 PM

Updated Tuesday, Dec 24 at 7:20 PM

AUSTIN -- A brutal attack downtown last month nearly killed a woman, all over just $40. Now, one of the suspects is in jail.

Police said the three suspects attacked and robbed two women that night within an hour of each other. Even with detailed sketches and vehicle descriptions, no tips came in. Still, they made an arrest and now one of the three is in jail.

A phone call from police this Christmas Eve was good news for one North Texas couple.

"The detective called us early this morning and gave us an early Christmas present," said the victim's husband Bill, who requested that his last name not be used.

In November, a college reunion trip to Austin ended with memories they would like to forget.

"They almost killed her for $40. And if they'll do that for $40, who knows what they're capable of doing? They have forever changed her life, and it's not fair.," Bill said last month.

Bill said his wife walked three blocks from dinner back to their downtown hotel around 2:45 a.m.

Within 50 feet of the front door, a man snuck up behind her, snatched her purse with just $40 in it, then pushed her to the ground.

"It knocked her out. She suffered a concussion [and a] bruise on her brain. And the main most traumatic thing, if that's not bad enough, the blow. The punch to her neck caused her carotid artery to collapse," Bill said.

On Monday, police arrested 22-year-old Kynneth Anderson, one of the three suspects in the mugging.

"Vindication somewhat," Bill said of the news of Anderson's arrest. "Felt a lot of relief for my wife in knowing that the person who did this to her is off the streets and can't do it to anybody else."

She wasn't the only victim that night. Police say 40 minutes prior, the suspects attacked another woman as she tried to hail a cab on the corner of Eighth Street and West Avenue.

"I never expected in Austin, on West Sixth Street, to be robbed in the middle of the street essentially," the 26-year-old victim told KVUE last month. She did not want to be identified.

The suspects didn't physically hurt her.

"They pulled me in different directions. There's a little bit of a struggle where he's yanking on the bag. I see a third guy get out of the back seat so I give up," she said.

"We had little to nothing to go on. It was a true 'who done it,' if you will," said Austin police Sgt. Blake Johnson. "A lot of times we'll get public tips, help from the public, kind of a smoking gun that breaks the case wide open.That was not the case here."

Johnson said this case had to be solved -- and quick.

"What's going to happen next time? It was really bad this time. Are they going to hurt somebody even worse or kill somebody?" he said.

They found Anderson in Bell County.

"Running down every possible lead, vetting it completely, exhausting everything we could and slowly piecing together stuff," Johnson said of how they tracked down Anderson.

"A great feeling to know the police department took this as seriously as they did and stuck with it. Frankly, my wife and I really didn't think that the people who did this would ever be brought to justice," Bill said.

Still, for these victims, the terrifying memories will last forever.

"It's difficult. It's been a definite trauma. There's lots of residual issues that are surfacing with the trauma and the fear," Bill said.

SJohnson said he expects to issue warrants for the other two suspects within the next couple of weeks.

Bill told KVUE his wife is doing better, but the long-term effects of her injuries are still unknown. For now, they are enjoying Christmas at home with their children