LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - By Jena Johnson - email
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin Police have released video surveillance taken from the dashboard of a police unit which shows a Diboll Police officer apprehending an elderly man during a medical emergency.
The video, which was obtained through an open records request, shows a Lufkin Police Officer Hector Rosales arriving at the scene at 4:31 p.m. on July 27 to provide backup to Diboll Police. It shows Diboll Police Officer Grant Jones holding the driver, Tracey Lott, in his custody for about 30 minutes.
According to a previous report, Lott was driving his friend, Johnny Hodge, to a hospital when he was pursued by Diboll Police into Lufkin city limits. Lott pulled over at the intersection of U.S. 59 and College Street, where Jones used his pistol to shatter the windshield.
The video shows Rosales asking Jones if he had called for emergency personnel to assist Hodge. Jones tells Rosales he did, then it shows Rosales confirm that emergency personnel was on the way.
The video then shows an ambulance arrive and EMTs check Hodge, then leave.
Lott had previously said Hodge had declined transportation by ambulance because he could not afford it.
At one point in the video, the Rosales talks to an EMT about the incident. It is not clear if it is Rosales or the EMT who says the following:
"He's an old man. He's trying to get another old man to the hospital."
"I don't know, man. You gotta choose your battles."
"Everything's crazy in Diboll."
KTRE also has an open records request in to Diboll Police for their surveillance of the incident. Chief Kent Havard has said he will release the video after it has been reviewed.
The elderly men say they had their emergency flashers on. Angelina County Sheriff's Lt. Bryan Holley says that alone doesn't exempt you from the law.
"If an officer gets in behind somebody that's running at excess of the posted speed, like I said we're still bound by law to stop there and find out the circumstance behind it," Holley said.
He says the men should have called 911 first, before setting out. What is still under investigation: Did Jones use good judgment during the stop? The Diboll city manager will make a decision on Jones' future by this evening.