NEW BOSTON, Texas–A man who crashed into Wisdom Animal Clinic in Texarkana while fleeing from police in January was sentenced Thursday to 20 years in prison by a Bowie County jury.
Joshua Ellis Sutton, 32, was found guilty Wednesday afternoon of two counts of evading arrest in a vehicle, escape from custody, possession of a controlled substance and two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. He was ordered to pay a $2,000 fine for each count. Sutton was acquitted on two additional counts of aggravated assault.
Assistant District Attorney Bradley Akins said Sutton received maximum terms of 20 years which will run concurrently by law because the charges were consolidated for trial.
Akins said he is “thankful for the citizens of Bowie County who served on Sutton’s jury.”
“I appreciate them not only for their diligence in hearing and processing the evidence and making the right and appropriate findings, but also for stepping up to serve and to help continue to protect our community,”Akins added.
Sutton was driving a red Toyota Corolla when Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Kody Edwards tried to pull him over because of outstanding warrants Jan 9. He led the trooper on a chase that ended when he crashed into a surgery room at Wisdom Animal Clinic on the wall at Richmond Road and Maple Street in Texarkana, Texas. The front of the clinic faces Texas Blvd.
A vet and five other staff were at work in a surgery room when Sutton crashed through the wall and fled on foot.
He was found hiding behind an adult probation office down the street after a two-hour manhunt. He had a bag of marijuana, an ecstasy pill and a pipe containing methamphetamine. Because of the crash, Sutton was taken to Wadley Regional Medical Center for a medical evaluation after he was arrested. While in the hospital’s x-ray room.
After being treated, Sutton allegedly escaped on foot while he was being placed into a patrol unit at the hospital. He was reportedly taken back into custody after a Texas Parks and Wildlife canine located him inside of a building Sutton allegedly entered by kicking in the door.
Sutton was represented by Deborah Moore of the Bowie County Public Defender’s Office. Akins represented the government and 102nd District Judge Jeff Addison presided.
Update: This article has been updated to include comment from Bradley Akins.