Houston Police responded to a break-in at the city’s Museum of Fine Arts Tuesday night, leading to a lengthy search along the nearby bayou and sewers after the suspects reportedly escaped by boat.
Houston police released information on social media:
Central officers K9 and FOX are searching for burglary suspects near Memorial Park. Suspects broke into a museum and then fled on a boat in Buffalo Bayou. 202 pic.twitter.com/OW4U92ZIsi
— Houston Police (@houstonpolice) March 17, 2021
KHOU said a museum security guard reported the suspected intruders at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, after spotting a woman and a man inside the closed museum.
“Apparently, they broke into the building. When officers arrived, they jumped out of the building and ran to Buffalo Bayou, got in a motorboat,” Lt. Larry Crowson with the Houston Police Department told reporters. “Officers were able to get on the Shepherd bridge and the loop bridge and kind of block them in.”
Soon, officers lost track of the boat, so authorities called in a dive team and a helicopter to assist in the search, KRIV reported.
The dive team located the boat with the suspects along the bayou, but the suspects went deeper into the sewer system, and officers lost track of them, Crowson said.
Officers followed the suspects into the sewers and lost radio communication for about an hour.
“We became a little concerned that we couldn’t make contact with them,” said Crowson. “We located the officers, and they are okay, the suspects had fled back further into the tunnel.”
The officers exited through a manhole, and the search was called off. The recovered boat is being used as evidence, but both suspects are still on the run.
It is unclear if the suspects managed to take any works of art.
The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information on the suspects is urged to call Houston Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.