Officials lock down Calhoun County schools after robbery; suspect arrested
March 27, 2014 at 11 p.m.
Updated March 27, 2014 at 10:28 p.m.
An 18-year-old Calhoun County High School student was arrested on campus and is suspected of robbing a convenience store in Port Lavaca about 8 a.m. Thursday.
Jeremy Bernal is accused of wearing a ski mask, brandishing an air pistol at a clerk at the Get N' Go on Half League Road and leaving the store with an undisclosed amount of money and tobacco, said Detective Colin Rangnow of the Port Lavaca Police Department.
Because of the robbery's close proximity to Travis Middle School, HJM Elementary School and Calhoun County High School, the three schools were put on lockdown.
Witnesses told police Bernal left the convenience store and went to the McDonald's on state Highway 35, where he dumped the gun in a trash can and then went back to the school, Rangnow said.
Using video surveillance at McDonald's, officers identified Bernal. Officers found Bernal at the school during lunch, when he voluntarily confessed to the robbery, Rangnow said.
The school was in no danger, Rangnow said, because the air pistol was left at McDonald's.
The money and tobacco were confiscated, and Bernal is in Calhoun County Jail on a charge of aggravated robbery.