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Man strikes home while fleeing police

By KBell
April 1, 2011 at 9:05 a.m.
Updated March 31, 2011 at 11:01 p.m.

Olga Gonzales, left, and her daughter-in-law, Yolanda Garza, reveal the damage left by a truck that crashed into Gonzales' home about 12:20 a.m. Friday. Jose Montoya, 26, fled after crashing into the home and was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated and felony evading arrest with a vehicle.

A 26-year-old Victoria man crashed his truck into a home in the 2300 block of Southwest Ben Jordan Street while attempting to flee from officers about 12:20 a.m. Friday, police said.

"I was barely falling asleep when I heard somebody put on brakes and cop sirens," said the homeowner, Olga Gonzales, 61. "I heard a bang. It shook the whole house."

Jose Montoya, the driver of the truck, was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated with an open alcohol container and felony evading arrest with a vehicle, according to the arrest report.

Gonzales said after the commotion, she and her husband went outside and saw the bed of a truck sticking out of their spare bedroom, which is adjacent to their bedroom.

"I thank God it wasn't this room or that room over there," she said pointing to rooms on either side of the gaping hole made by the truck.

Family members regularly stay in the other room adjacent to the spare bedroom, and grandchildren often play in the spare bedroom, Gonzales said.

Several minutes earlier, Victoria Police Department Officer Gilbert Cantu had attempted to pull over Montoya's Ford F-150, which was heard playing loud music alongside another vehicle, at the intersection of Laurent Street and Houston Highway, according to the report.

Montoya refused to stop and proceeded east on the highway and onto Stolz Street, said Sgt. Adam Nieto.

Montoya then turned south onto North Ben Jordan Street, reaching speeds of up to 80 mph. He accelerated through the street's intersection with Port Lavaca Highway, according to the arrest report.

He then struck a curb on the left side of the road in the 2300 block of Southwest Ben Jordan Street and accelerated through a grassy field before striking the home, Nieto said.

According to the arrest report, Montoya jumped out of a back door and fled south through the grassy field, where Cantu apprehended him about 30 feet later.

"I couldn't go back to sleep. I was just scared," Gonzales said.

Gonzales' husband, Jesse, recently suffered a heart attack and underwent several surgeries.

"I was scared for him because I wasn't sure how he was going to take it," his wife said.

The family had to cancel the insurance on the home to help pay his medical bills, Gonzales said.

They're hoping Montoya's insurance will help pay for repairs.

"I'm hoping to help (my father) fix it, because he can't do it himself," said the Gonzales' son, Andy Garza, 36.

A blue tarp covered the hole in the house and shattered glass and a headlight remained in the Gonzales' yard.

The family stayed upbeat, repeatedly saying they felt lucky that nobody, not even Montoya, was injured in the crash.

While officers were performing field sobriety tests, Montoya complained of sore ribs. He was taken to Citizens Medical Center, where he was cleared for incarceration, according to the report.

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