KELLY DENISE JONES STEPHANIE LAY
Wednesday night several Montgomery County Precinct 4 deputies had their evenings planned. In some cases their wives had the evenings planned for them. Most had some vacation time, sick time or comp time to burn before it was lost at the end of the year. This accrued over the past year of hard work and long hours.
However just after 3pm on Wednesday that all changed.
Deputy Kevin Sapp who was on routine patrol on US 59 just south of FM1314 when he spotted a pickup make an illegal turn onto West Hammond. He attempted to stop the vehicle which finally did come to a stop
As the vehicle stopped a dog which had been in the back jumped out. Sapp identified John Robert Garner, age 35 of 20780 South Sabine in New Caney. He also identified the female passenger as Shanna Sprague, age 42 who is from Porter and just recently moved back to the area from Oklahoma. Deputy Sapp noticed a pouch between the two on the drivers seat.
As he talked with Garner he allowed the female to retrieve the dog that had jumped out and then return to the truck.
Sapp then asked Garner to exit the vehicle. As they walked to the back of the vehicle he noticed a bulge in his pocket. Not sure if it could possibly be a weapon he asked Garner permission to pat him down which was granted. That’s when Sapp determined it was a plastic bag with what felt to be pills in it. As he attempted to pull it out Garner started to resist shoving it back in his pocket. As Sapp then attempted to arrest him for resisting Garner and Sapp began to struggle and Sapp was thrown to the ground. Garner fled on foot past Love Bugs Day Care and Triumph Christian Center. They continued through yards and over fences until Sapp lost him just before they got to US 59.
During the chase the female attempted to drive off but was stopped by deputies responding to Sapp’s request for help. She was detained and questioned and later released as deputies continue to investigate her.
Deputies from Precinct 4, DPS, Wood Branch, Paton Village and Sheriff’s Department set a perimeter and started searching for Gardner. It was at this point when the Wood Branch Police Chief observed Garner run across both the north and south bound lanes of US 59 causing many vehicles to brake to avoid him as he ran into the woods on the east side of the freeway.
The perimeter was then moved to the eastside of the freeway and Houston Police joined in the search with their K-9 unit and helicopter. At one point one motorist driving northbound on 59 and watching the action unfolding failed to see the traffic in front slow down and rear ended and SUV. Nobody was injured.
Finally at dusk Constable Hayden called the search off. Knowing who the suspect was deputies now started the slow search for him and his whereabouts.
Several deputies who had been off either were called in , many volunteering to return to work to assist in the search.
As deputies towed Garners vehicle it was determined the pouch on the seat had been removed by the female and put in a culvert pipe. Checking it and realizing it contained drugs deputies took to the woods and set up a several hour surveillance on the location thinking Garner would return for his drugs.
To their surprise not about an hour later a vehicle approached and a female exited the vehicle and retrieved the pouch. Units moved in and took both ito custody.
The driver was identified as Stephanie Lee Lay, age 40 of Canal Street in Willis. The passenger who retrieved the pouch was identified as Kelley Denise Jones, age 38, a local hair stylist of Yancy Street in Porter.
Both were taken into. Lay had marijuana in her purse and was placed in the Montgomery County Jail on a $750 bond.
Jones was arrested for and charged with Possession of a controlled substance in a drug free zone. Inside the pouch the substance was tested positive as methamphetamine. She is in the Montgomery County Jail on a $100,000 bond. She has a lengthy criminal history including DWI, forgery, burglary of a habitation, theft,. After several trips to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice she was on parole until August of last year.
Deputies continued their search into the night and determined Garner had just been released from the Harris County Jail fifteen hours prior to his traffic stop. He had been arrested last Saturday on possession in Harris County and given a $20,000 bond. It was also determined that only one hour prior to his traffic stop he was at his bail bondsman’s office in Conroe signing paperwork.
They also discovered the female who bonded him out was driving a silver Camero. Deputies started searching areas along US 59. Hotels, motels, anywhere Garner could be held up. They were just about to call it off for the night when they drove in the the Executive Suites hotel in Humble. There they spotted a silver Camero and after running the license determined it was actually owned by Angela Davis, 28 of Lago Trace in Huffman. The same woman that bailed Garner out.
Deputies called for backups and with the assistance of Humble Police determined they were in a room directly above the room where Michael Anderson, of New Caney who was arrested last year when deputies recovered a large amount of cocaine and over $250,000 from his home in New Caney.
Deputies approached and knocked on the door, it was opened by Garner and when he realized who it was attempted to slam it shut. It was prevented partially by one of the deputies who got his fingers slammed in it. Deputies were able to gain access to the room.
Inside they found more drugs lying on countertops , dressers and the bed. At this point Richard Arthur McClure, age 33 of Idleglen in New Caney attempted to flee and injured one of the deputies heads as he was knocked down.
McClure was arrested and booked into the Harris County Jail on a charge of Assault to a public servant and possession of a controlled substance. He too has a lengthy criminal history in Montgomery County of assault, possession, resisting arrest and evading arrest.
Also in the room was Angela Davis who was charged with possession and booked into the Harris County Jail a little over twenty-four hours after she bonded Garner out of the same jail.
Jennifer Lewis who was also in the room was arrested for possession of a controlled substance.
The other male in the room has been identified as Paul Rasco of Porter. He is being held in the Harris County Jail on possession of a controlled substance also.
Johnny Garner who lives on Sabine Street in New Caney gave Harris County officials his address as 15915 Kuykendahl #700 when he was booked in for Assaulting a public servant and possession of a controlled substance. He also faces additional charges for his flight and assault in Montgomery County.
Just as the sun came up Thursday morning deputies finally had their paperwork complete, Their prisoners transported and were able to head back home to get some rest or finish their Christmas shopping they had planned to do the night before.
Constable Hayden commented on how when something like this happens all the deputies come together as brothers and assist each other until the mission is complete. They continue to work daily to rid East Montgomery of the dangerous drugs and criminals. “With this on traffic stop made by Deputy Sapp we were able to take eight drug users off the streets”, said Hayden.
Another example of the is on New Year’s Eve as most people ring it in with friends and family All Montgomery County Precinct 4 Deputies will be ringing it in arresting impaired drivers to help everyone have a safe New Year’s Eve.