Man involved in high-speed chase that started in Angelina Co. ge - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Breaking

Man involved in high-speed chase that started in Angelina Co. gets 10 years

Source: KTRE Staff Source: KTRE Staff
Source: Lufkin Police Department Source: Lufkin Police Department
Richard Kay (Source: Angelina County Jail) Richard Kay (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Dennis Arceneaux (Source: Angelina County Jail) Dennis Arceneaux (Source: Angelina County Jail)
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) -

An Angelina County jury sentenced a St. Joseph, Missouri man to 10 years in prison for stealing a white Chevrolet pickup and leading law enforcement officers on a three-county chase in August of 2015. During the chase, one of the people in the car threw chain saws at the pursuing officers.

The jury sentenced Richard Paul Kay, 27, to 10 years in prison for the unauthorized use of a motor vehicle charge he pleaded guilty to before the trial started. They also sentenced him to two years in prison for the evading arrest charge. Kay will serve the prison terms concurrently, and Al Charanza, his defense attorney, said his client will be eligible to parole in two-and-a-half years.

Kay will also be required to pay a $5,000 fine.

After deliberating only 45 minutes Tuesday afternoon, the jury found Kay and Dennis Paul Arceneaux, 35, of Shepherd, not guilty of assault of a public servant.

Kay and Arceneaux were charged with aggravated assault of a public servant. At the beginning of the trial, Kay pleaded guilty to evading arrest and unauthorized use of a vehicle. No plea deal was in place for those pleas, so his punishment was decided by the jury.

On August 2, 2015, Kay took off from a traffic stop and lead police on a high speed chase that reached speeds of up to 100 mph across Angelina, Nacogdoches, and Cherokee Counties.

The state took less then 30 minutes to wrap up their case.

Lufkin Officer Devin Trotti started testimony with his role in the chase.

“I joined the pursuit on the west side of the loop,” Trotti said.

Trotti said he was involved in the chase from the loop to Alto and then back to Lufkin and up to Nacogdoches.

Trotti said he was with Kay while EMS worked with him.

“He said he wanted to talk, and I said we would save that for later,” Trotti said. “He did say he took 31 Vicodin and 13 grams of meth.”

Trotti said he could not remember if it appeared that Kay was under the influence of drugs.

James Freeman then talked about his interaction with police.

“The police wanted to know if there was any property missing from that location [Lazy Acres Mobile Home Park],” Freeman said. “Upon arriving at the location I noticed some things missing. There were wheels missing, a pressure washer was missing. That’s what I noticed right off the bat.”

Freeman said he noticed inside a shed there were two chain saws missing.

The state then rested.

In her closing statement, prosecutor Deborah Moore said the facts of the case are not disputable. Moore argued that the use of the chainsaws was intentional.

Moore said the two never voluntarily stopped and they were forced to stop by state troopers. Moore said the jury needs to find the two men guilty.

John Peralta, Arceneaux's defense attorney,  argued there was no prior threat by the defendants when the chain saws were thrown. Peralta said these were attempted assaults and not actual assaults.

“He could have been charged that way,” Peralta said. “I would be up here with a whole other sets of issues, but they chose to come up here with this and there is no evidence that a threat was made."

Peralta told the jury they could have possibly been trying to throw out stolen property they had in the truck.

“That is reasonable instead of trying to harm Sgt. Willmon,” Peralta said.

Peralta said the state has to prove which one threw out the chainsaws and you do not know.

“This case should not have been brought, and it is way over charged,” Peralta said.

In his closing statement  Al Charanza, Kay's defense attorney, said the case is simple.

“There’s no evidence,” Charanza said. “It’s that simple. There is no evidence.”

Charanza said he is not disputing the evading arrest charge because Kay said he was guilty.

“This was a bad chase, and ladies and gentlemen you are going to have to go back and find his punishment," Charanza said.

Charanza said they did not charge an attempted assault, but the DA office did not charge that, because they said they knowingly or intentionally did it. Charanza said that is not the case.

If the intended for those chainsaws to be used to threaten the officers, then why wasn’t the back pack or jack and tools thrown out,” Charanza said. “If they meant to hurt the officer they would have thrown it all. No, they were trying to get rid of stolen items. At this point Mr. Kay realized they needed to get rid of the stuff.”

Charanza said the problem of overcharging is important because if you do then you open the door to have people charged with assault if they throw out a can and it hits an officers vehicle.

Moore cam back an argued that if they hadn’t intended to hurt Willmon with the chainsaws then they would have thrown them out to the side of the road or a pasture they drove into near Alto.

Moore then brought up a bomb and said if a bomb was used but defused before it went off, the threat was still there and the chainsaws are the same.

“The threat was real,” Moore said. “Do not get sidetracked by the rabbit holes the defense sends you down. The threat is real.”

At 2:33 p.m., the case was given to the jury for deliberation.

Copyright 2016 KTRE. All rights reserved.

  • East Texas NewsMore>>

  • Lufkin's Community Food Drive built on woman's legacy

    Lufkin's Community Food Drive built on woman's legacy

    Saturday, November 18 2017 9:28 PM EST2017-11-19 02:28:07 GMT
    Source: KTRE StaffSource: KTRE Staff
    The Community Food Drive in Lufkin is special to some because of the large amount of people it brings together from all walks of life.  "It's just like so many different people, very diverse," said volunteer, Priscilla Gonzalez. "It's just kind of cool to see all these people coming together to do one thing." For others, like Keith Kennedy, it's all about the service being provided to the greater community. "They're in miracle territory,...More >>
    The Community Food Drive in Lufkin is special to some because of the large amount of people it brings together from all walks of life.  "It's just like so many different people, very diverse," said volunteer, Priscilla Gonzalez. "It's just kind of cool to see all these people coming together to do one thing." For others, like Keith Kennedy, it's all about the service being provided to the greater community. "They're in miracle territory,...More >>
  • East Texas seasonal hires may have helped lower statewide unemployment rate

    East Texas seasonal hires may have helped lower statewide unemployment rate

    Friday, November 17 2017 7:26 PM EST2017-11-18 00:26:00 GMT

    According to the Texas Workforce Commission, unemployment rate has fallen to a 3.9 percent since  In East Texas some holiday job openings have helped that percentage grow.  During March Target finished a 3.5 million dollar remodel that brought in new product lines. “We've actually added new positions and we've been able to accommodate additional hires because our business has escalated since then,” said store team leader, Kris Hoephner. This addition to the Ta...

    More >>

    According to the Texas Workforce Commission, unemployment rate has fallen to a 3.9 percent since  In East Texas some holiday job openings have helped that percentage grow.  During March Target finished a 3.5 million dollar remodel that brought in new product lines. “We've actually added new positions and we've been able to accommodate additional hires because our business has escalated since then,” said store team leader, Kris Hoephner. This addition to the Ta...

    More >>
  • Lufkin STEM program plant trees at local schools

    Lufkin STEM program plant trees at local schools

    Friday, November 17 2017 7:25 PM EST2017-11-18 00:25:00 GMT
    Source: KTRESource: KTRE

    The 7th grade, STEM program from Lufkin joined up with some of the senior STEM students and spent their Friday, morning, planting trees at Burley Primary and Slack Elementary Schools. 

    More >>

    The 7th grade, STEM program from Lufkin joined up with some of the senior STEM students and spent their Friday, morning, planting trees at Burley Primary and Slack Elementary Schools. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly