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  02/24/2017 Robbery Suspect Placed On Curfew And House Arrest  

ST. THOMAS, V.I. – V.I. Superior Court Magistrate Henry Carr III ruled that there was sufficient evidence to move forward on robbery and weapons-related charges against Darwin Puello-Mateo.

Following his arrest on Feb. 23, Puello-Mateo, 18, of Contant, made his initial appearance in court Friday morning to be advised of his rights on one count each of first-degree robbery, carrying of firearm, disturbance of the peace threat, possession of stolen property and grand larceny stemming from a Jan. 18 armed robbery incident.

Prosecutors characterized Puello-Mateo as a risk of flight and requested that he be placed on a curfew.

Magistrate Carr concurred that Puello-Mateo was a flight risk and maintained his bail at $75,000. He also ordered him to abide by a number of court-imposed bail conditions, which include a 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew from Monday to Friday and house arrest on weekends.

            According to Det. Shenika Simon’s probable cause fact sheet in support of Puello-Mateo’s arrest, the victim told police that he was in the area of Contant Knolls when Puello-Mateo asked him for a ride to the bottom of the hill. The victim stopped his vehicle, Puello-Mateo got in and they began to travel southward in the area of Ember’s Guest House.

            As they were traveling along the Moravian Highway, the victim decelerated to travel towards the area of Maternal Child Healthcare. Then, Puello-Mateo pulled out a gun, pointed it towards the victim and demanded that he stop the vehicle. A struggle ensued between the two as the victim tried to wrest the gun from Puello-Mateo, but he was unsuccessful. Puello-Mateo then threatened to shoot the victim and “bust his head off,” according to Det. Simon.

            Puello-Mateo then demanded that the victim remove his jewelry – worth $11,750 – and he complied. Puello-Mateo also took an envelope containing $17,600 that was inside the vehicle and then fled on foot. From a police photo array, the victim positively identified Puello-Mateo as the person who robbed him at gunpoint, according to Det. Simon.  

Puello-Mateo is scheduled to make his second court appearance on Mar. 9 for his arraignment hearing, at which he will formally answer to the charges.

  Robbery suspect placed on curfew and house arrest.pdf