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Victoria man arrested after high-speed chase early Sunday morning

By Jessica Priest
June 17, 2013 at 1:17 a.m.


A high-speed chase just after midnight Sunday ended in gunfire and one man in jail.

The chase began when a Department of Public Safety trooper spotted Leon Antonio Jaramillo, 19, of Victoria, traveling north on U.S. Highway 59 at 99 mph in a 2007 gray Buick four-door, said Trooper Gerald Bryant of the Texas Department of Public Safety.

The vehicle, which was reported stolen from a Victoria home in the 600 block of Fillmore Avenue, is valued at $19,000, according to police reports.

Trooper Vern Sterry activated his lights and began pursuing Jaramillo on U.S. Highway 59 near Spur 91. Jaramillo did not stop though, continuing on into Jackson County, where sheriff's deputies laid down a spike strip at Farm-to-Market Road 234 at El Toro. Jaramillo drove over the spikes, Bryant said.

Although the tires began to deflate, Jaramillo continued driving for another 1 to 2 miles. Then, just south of Edna, his vehicle veered to the left and struck a guard rail.

But he didn't give up then.

Bryant said Jaramillo then put his vehicle into reverse and gunned the motor while Sterry was attempting to apprehend him.

An assisting Victoria County Sheriff's Office deputy who was approaching the scene from behind saw the back-up lights go on and the car come toward him. The deputy fired one shot because he feared for his life, Bryant said.

"Then, they were able to get the subject out of the vehicle and make the arrest," Bryant said.

Edna EMS was called to the scene, but neither Jaramillo nor Sterry were injured in the crash or scuffle that followed.

The Victoria County Sheriff's deputy, whose name was not released Monday, suffered minor injuries to his hands and was taken by a Jackson County Sheriff's deputy to Citizens Medical Center and then released, Victoria County Sheriff T. Michael O'Connor said.

Jaramillo is charged with evading arrest with a vehicle, a third-degree felony, and unauthorized use of a vehicle. He is being held at the Jackson County Jail, and an investigation is ongoing, Bryant said.

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