TEXARKANA, Texas–A veterinarian and five other staff were reportedly hurt when a man slammed his car into a surgery room at Wisdom Animal Clinic while allegedly fleeing from a Texas trooper earlier this month.
Joshua Ellis Sutton, 31, is facing a long list of felony charges, including six counts of aggravated assault, for events that began with an attempted traffic stop Jan. 9, according to court records.
Sutton allegedly led a state trooper on a chase that ended when he crashed into a surgery room while it was in use at Wisdom Animal Clinic on the wall at Richmond Road and Maple Street. The front of the clinic faces Texas Blvd. Sutton allegedly fled the crash site on foot.
Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Kody Edwards had tried to pull Sutton over because of outstanding felony warrants.
After the crash and after a two-hour manhunt, Sutton was discovered hiding behind an adult probation office building a few blocks away. He allegedly had a bag of marijuana, an ecstasy pill and a pipe containing methamphetamine in his possession. 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, a pill identified as fentanyl allegedly fell from his person.
After being treated, Sutton allegedly escaped on foot while he was handcuffed and being placed into a patrol unit outside the hospital. Sutton was taken back into custody after a Texas Parks and Wildlife canine located him inside of a building he allegedly entered by kicking in the door.
“Sutton is clearly a flight risk,” according to a probable cause affidavit filed in the Jan. 9 cases.
During a search of the Corolla, officers allegedly recovered more drugs, including jars of methamphetamine. Sutton reportedly left his phone in the red Toyota Corolla he is accused of wrecking into the clinic. While officers were checking the car, a text message appeared which allegedly referred to buying drugs from him, the affidavit said.
Sutton had allegedly led deputies with the Bowie County Sheriff’s Office on a high-speed pursuit on Jan. 7, just two days before he reportedly crashed into the vet clinic, according to court records. Sutton was pulled over shortly after midnight that day near the intersection of New Boston Road and Kings Highway in Nash, Texas, for allegedly driving without tail lights.
Sutton allegedly gave a deputy a false name and claimed he’d gone out without his identification. While the officers were checking the phony name with dispatchers, two passengers jumped out while Sutton drove away. Sutton allegedly reached speeds of 100 miles per hour before the pursuit was called off. The two passengers allegedly told investigators that Sutton used a fake name and fled from police because he knew he had felony warrants outstanding.
Bowie County court records show Sutton has been charged with multiple felonies, including six counts of aggravated assault, two counts of evading arrest in a vehicle, several counts of possession of a controlled substance and burglary of a building. Misdemeanor evading arrest and marijuana possession charges have also been levied.
Sutton is currently being held in the Bowie County jail with bonds totaling more than $1 million.