DIBOLL, TX (KTRE) - An Angelina County Sheriff's Office deputy suffered a minor injury to his ear when a suspect he had arrested on a drug charge allegedly assaulted him and escaped from custody twice Wednesday.
Jaime Moreno Jr., 38, of Diboll, is still being held in the Angelina County jail on a second-degree felony possession of a controlled substance between 1 and 4 grams charge, a second-degree felony escape causing injury charge, a third-degree assault of a public servant charge, and three misdemeanor traffic charges.
Collectively, Moreno's bail amount was set at $26,500 for the possession charge and the three misdemeanor charges. No bail amounts were set for the escape or assault charges.
According to the arrest affidavit, an ACSO deputy was on patrol on Rivercrest Road when he spotted a 4-door Honda passenger car with an expired registration sticker and no front license plate. After the deputy made a traffic stop on the Honda, he asked Moreno and his passenger to get out of the car.
When the ACSO deputy asked Moreno if there was anything he needed to know about in the car, he said no.
After the deputy got permission to search the Honda, he found a clear baggie full of a substance that appeared to be methamphetamine inside a 12-volt cigarette lighter plug in the center console, the affidavit stated. The deputy also allegedly found a cut-down red straw "commonly used to snort illegal substances" next to it.
At that point, the ACSO deputy called for backup.
As the deputy continued to search the car, he found that the trim around the emergency brake/gear shift area was loose, the affidavit stated. The ACSO deputy found more baggies with a crystal-like substance inside the console and in an Ice Breakers Cool Mint container and empty plastic bags.
Both Moreno and his passenger claimed the drugs weren't theirs at first, the affidavit stated. Later, Moreno allegedly admitted that the drugs were his, and the ACSO deputy let the other man go.
When the deputy got into his patrol unit to take Moreno to the county jail, Moreno claimed he had more drugs in his pants, and he needed to get them out. Because Moreno seemed to be having trouble getting the drugs out of his pants, the ACSO deputy decided to take one handcuff off Moreno to allow him to get at the drugs.
According to the affidavit, the deputy was concerned that Moreno would destroy the evidence on the way to the jail.
After Moreno dug around in his pants and told the ACSO deputy that there wasn't anything else there, the deputy turned him around to put the other cuff back on him, and Moreno swung at him, the affidavit stated.
The two men got into a scuffle, and then Moreno ran away from the deputy. At that point, the ACSO deputy used a Taser on the suspect to prevent him from escaping, but it didn't work, possibly because only one prong stuck in Moreno's arm, the affidavit stated.
The ACSO deputy chased Moreno into a pine thicket and caught him a short time later. Moreno allegedly swung at the deputy several more times, and the two men fought again.
Because Moreno still had a cuff attached to one of his wrists, it "presented a great hazard" to the deputy. In an effort to get Moreno under control, the ACSO deputy punched him in the face and managed to get Moreno back in both handcuffs.
When the deputy walked Moreno to the front of his patrol unit and bent over to pick up his portable radio, Moreno took off again. The ACSO deputy chased Moreno down the road and took him down again, the affidavit stated.
After things calmed down, the ACSO deputy noticed pain in area of his right ear, which was evidence that Moreno had connected with him during the assault, the affidavit stated.
The deputy radioed for EMS when he noticed that Moreno was bleeding, the affidavit stated. It was discovered that both the ACSO and Moreno had open wounds and injuries, and Moreno was taken to a Lufkin hospital for medical clearance.
Lt. Stacy Seymore with the Angelina County Sheriff's Office wrote on Sheriff Sanches' Facebook page that Moreno had what appeared to be something like a seizure after the ACSO deputy took him into custody.
Once the ACSO arrived at the hospital, he turned Moreno over to medical staff.
Moreno left the hospital a short time later. Officers with the Diboll Police Department found Moreno hiding in a tree a short time later, and he was taken into custody without any further incident.
The ACSO deputy obtained and got three felony arrest warrants for Moreno: possession of a controlled substance, escape, and assault of a public servant.