Teen going to trial on robbery charges

A 19-year-old accused of robbing five suspects and leading police on a chase in a stolen car two years ago is expected to go to trial next month following a pre-trial hearing Friday morning.

The pre-trial hearing was at 10:30 a.m. in the 161st District Court of Judge John Smith. The accused, Leon Flores, is represented by attorney Adrian Chavez, who was not at the hearing.

Judge Smith told Flores he could bet on facing his jury trial June 4, as his name was the first on the docket.

Flores was indicted in January 2017 on seven charges, including five counts of aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony, and two counts of unauthorized use of a vehicle, a state jail felony.

Police first charged Flores in August 2016, after dispatchers received a 9-1-1 call about a robbery in the 1200 block of Wilson Street, the Odessa American previously reported.

Upon arrival, officers found five people who told them they were robbed by four suspects, including Flores, who was 17 at the time, a 15-year-old boy, another unknown male, and a 12-year-old girl, of their belongings at gunpoint, and then entered a Ford Fusion and sped off.

Officers found the vehicle almost half an hour later heading south in the 400 block of Foster Avenue and tried pulling the driver over, but the driver gave chase before plowing into the chain-link fence of a house at the corner of Fall Avenue and Clements Street.

The suspects bolted out of the vehicle but police caught three of the suspects, Flores, the 15-year-old boy and the 12-year-old girl, who were later identified as the robbers.

Jail records show Flores has been in the Ector County Detention Center since March 2017 and has no bonds.

Court records show Flores currently has a jury trial scheduled for 9 a.m. on June 4.