Authorities arrest final suspect in Zavalla beating, robbery

Brian Leviness (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Brian Leviness (Source: Angelina County Jail)

ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Authorities have arrested the fifth and final suspect in a brutal aggravated robbery which occurred at a house on Barge Road on Jan. 22.

Zavalla Police Chief Stefani Wade confirmed officers with US Forest Service and the sheriff's office arrested Brian Andrew Leviness, 25, of Zavalla, on Thursday.

Sheriff's Office Captain Alton Lenderman said his office got an anonymous tip that Leviness was on private land Thursday and camping out there.

According to a previous report, an investigation by the Zavalla Police Department revealed that Larry Shane McHale, 35, of Zavalla, Charles Eddie Evans Jr., 24, off San Augustine, Dale Gene Evans, 45, of Huntington, Leviness, and Hayley Leviness were all involved in the theft of a motorcycle and the contents of its saddlebags on Jan. 22.

The victim told authorities that he went to the home on Barge Road at the request of one of the suspects, and he was attacked when he tried to leave. The victim during the assault was allegedly hit in the head with a "hard, possibly metal object," causing him severe pain.

Once the victim went down, he was stomped on, kicked, and dragged down steps outside the residence, he said. The man told police he escaped when the suspects took his keys and turned their attention to stealing his motorcycle.

Angelina County Sheriff's Office deputies, Texas Department of Public Safety troopers, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department game wardens, and US marshals tried to arrest McHale as he was leaving the back of a home in Broaddus on Jan. 27. However, McHale allegedly escaped on the stolen motorcycle and led law enforcement on a high-speed chase.

During the chase, McHale got up to speeds of 150 mph before he hit tire spikes on FM 705 and wrecked the stolen motorcycle, the previous story stated.

McHale was taken by helicopter from the scene of where he wrecked the motorcycle to a hospital in Shreveport.

A week before the high-speed chase, McHale was driving a four-wheel drive pickup when he rammed it into a U.S. Forest Service vehicle and an ACSO vehicle before driving into the Sam Rayburn Reservoir. McHale managed to get away in the dark, according to San Augustine County Sheriff Robert Cartwright. Cartwright said authorities looked for McHale until 2 a.m. the following morning before they called off the search.

McHale did about $5,000 worth of damage to the vehicles, according to a previous report.

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