|Trinity Standard - Local News
Stories Added - November 2009
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Deputies use patrol cars to force suspect to stop
Trinity Standard - November 2009
GROVETON – A suspected drunk driver was forced to halt Sunday night by a team of deputies who used three cars to “box him in.”
According to Trinity County Sheriff Ralph Montemayor, Rodney Kells, 56, of Lufkin was subsequently charged with felony driving while intoxicated and felony evading arrest.
The sheriff said the incident began about 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct., 11, when officers received a report of a driver on Highway 94 who was weaving radically and forcing other vehicles off the highway.
The vehicle, described as a Crown Victoria, was traveling toward Groveton at a high rate of speed.
“Two deputies, Branden Bhattacharjee and John Sikes, went to the area in separate patrol vehicles and attempted to stop the car,” Montemayor said.
When the car refused to pull over, the deputies radioed for additional help and they were soon joined by Deputy Mark Moscinski in a third vehicle.
Meanwhile, Officer Ronald North of the Groveton Police Department and Pct. 1 Deputy Constable Rusty Barrett began blocking traffic in Groveton so that the deputies and the suspect would not encounter oncoming traffic during the pursuit.
Montemayor said one deputy took his patrol car and drove in front of the suspect, another drove behind and the third pulled to the side.
After boxing in the vehicle, the three deputies slowed and forced the fleeing driver to the curb, halting him just north of the Groveton city limits.
“Once they got him stopped, the suspect refused to get out of the car and the deputies had to break out a window in order to place him in custody,” Montemayor said. “When they got him out, they found the car was still in drive.”
While there was some contact between the suspect’s vehicle and one of the deputy’s patrol cars, Montemayor said there was little damage and no injuries reported.
Montemayor said Kells had two DWI convictions on his record so the complaint filed this week was raised to felony status.