Felony Plot Nets $40, Pack of Cigarettes


EAST COUNTY– A 19-year-old man was beaten and robbed in Roman Forest early Monday as part of a plot, after trying to help someone he believed to be his ex-girlfriend.

According to Roman Forest Police Chief Stephen Carlisle, the trouble began a short time earlier, when the victim responded to a text from his ex-girlfriend. They texted for a while, and then she asked the victim for a special favor. She asked him to bring her $40 and a pack of cigarettes, to her family home at 2515 Octavian Ct. She also requested he quietly meet her in the backyard.

Joseph Bryce Castellow

The victim agreed, and took the money and cigarettes to the Roman Forest home expecting a secret meeting with his ex-girlfriend. Unfortunately, that was never going to happen. Chief Carlisle said the investigation indicated the young woman was asleep when the messages were sent by her current boyfriend, 19-year-old Reed William Thornton and 21-year-old Joseph Bryce Castellow, another male living in the home.


Reed William Thornton

Investigators say the victim arrived and entered the backyard where Thornton and Castellow lay in wait. The pair allegedly emerged from the bushes where they were hiding with both assaulting the victim before Thornton held him while Castellow robbed him of his cash and cigarettes.

The victim finally managed to escape to his vehicle and flee. It was 3:15 a.m. when he stopped in the median on Roman Forest Blvd and called 911. Roman Forest Police Officer Chris Carswell responded, and after hearing the victim’s account, the officer went to the home on Octavian Ct. where the assault occurred. Thornton and Castellow emerged from the home with their hands in the air, still covered in their victim’s blood. They were taken into custody without incident.

Medics checked the bruised and bloody victim on the scene. He sustained multiple injuries to the face, with the most prominent being a very swollen left eye.

Reed Thornton and Bryce Castellow are charged with second-degree felony Robbery. Thornton’s bond was set at $58,000 and Castellow’s at $30,000.

According to Public Data, Reed was convicted of Burglary of a Building in February and sentenced to five years’ probation. In November, 2013, he pleaded guilty to Driving While Intoxicated. Reed pleaded guilty to Burglary of a Vehicle, and Felony Theft of Property ($1,200 to $20,000) in 2012. Note: Any arrests/convictions prior to 2012 are not public record because the suspect was a juvenile.

Police Chief Stephen Carlisle said robberies are extremely unusual in Roman Forest.

“No amount of patrolling or other proactive measures will prevent this sort of crime because of the deception involved,” Chief Carlisle said. “This wasn’t a home invasion or some random attack on a stranger – the suspects pretended to be someone known to the victim in order to lure him to their home, where they attacked and robbed him.”

“Fortunately, the victim contacted us immediately after the incident and in this case we were able to take the suspects into custody before they had an opportunity to flee or to destroy evidence,“ he said, “But I want assure both law abiding citizens and criminals that even when an extensive investigation is required, we will continue to pursue the truth until justice has been served.”

“This behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in Roman Forest.”


Publicly accessible Facebook photos posted Saturday and last Thursday appear to show a close bond between the suspects:

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  1. LocalDrifter

    MCPR left out photo caption:

    Reed Thornton photographs Joseph “Two Hickey” Castellow for commemorative photo of the neck bruises he just gave him.

  2. [email protected]

    sounds to me like these two punks are going to be having a change of address from here to the Huntsville Cross Bar Hilton which is where they belong god may they get assigned to judge watsons court.

  3. skyman

    Lmao. I started to laugh unstoppably when I saw the picts of these 2 little punks.they wont last 2 days in Huntsville providing the DA and the Courts do their job. A fine example of todays trash of the trash. Little punks

  4. Mr. Smartypants

    Thornton obviously has a disconnect between behavior and consequences. He has already been in the system and knows better than to think he will suffer any real punishment. Look how he is smirking in his police photo. His hanger on apprentice looks a little more serious. I hope the judge and prosecutor that handles this incident gives the taxpayers their money’s worth this time.

  5. NannyKat

    There is not a hole deep enough to bury these two slugs. Maybe a public hanging might do.Their disgusting plot to assault this young man clearly shows their lack of intelligence and no integrity.Society needs to deal with this trash now!

  6. RomanForestGuest

    I know all too well this family and their psycho lifestyle. The mother of this child does nothing to control him, in fact she enables it. He even chased her in the house with a butcher knife when he was high on dope. She gets her money from CPS by harboring teenagers with criminal records. Our neighborhood is going down the pits with these thugs. Its rental property and the landlord has been informed numerous times on the criminal activity going from this house. The police has a long record of the trouble from this house but nobody has done anything. I wonder will they do anything? Probably not until somebody gets badly beaten again or dies. I am totally disgusted with our judicial system allowing this to go as long as it does, and CPS too who knows about all of this. CPS allows children to be in such an environment? They sure do.

  7. bbarr

    ahhh….east county has more than its share of white trash and these two are a couple of fine examples…….hang on there thugs……. the ass whoop’n you gave WILL be out numbered by the ones you are destined to get in your pathetic futures.

  8. TG

    I think geniuses like these are so special when they have their pictures taken holding their hands and fingers in the childish manner called “gang signs”. And within a month we will see these two jerks in the news again as Crime Stoppers Featured Felons.

  9. LocalDrifter

    rump rangers

    The movie Brokeback Mountain never interested me.

    Another thing… A white dude keeping a spare cigarette in his hair looks equally as ridiculous as a black one storing a comb in his. We’ve finally reached moronic parity amongst the races.

  10. tired of the thuggs

    Look at those eyes think the women out there will say release him he’s to cute ? what a couple of THUGGS i hope the girlfriend is now the ex- girlfriend and she is cleaning the wounds on what was the ex

  11. LocalDrifter

    Forty dollars take yields 88 grand worth of bonds. Didn’t take time to thoroughly think this caper through, did they? If they victim was jettisoned as her boyfriend for not being very smart, she didn’t travel any further up the road to Mensa with current hairball Reed.

  12. LazyCop

    Most of our thugs nowdays, regardless of skin color, are stupid and careless. These “alleged” criminals, if found guilty should be locked in a cage for a good long time. This type of planned attack with injury was actually attempted murder. Just look at these two. Perfect examples of misguided, parasites of society that would kill you for a dime and pack of cigs. Hey juries and judges…let’s get these losers off the streets for the maximum sentence periods, ok ? We don’t need this slime injuring a citizen of one of my brave law enforcement associates.

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