• 70°

Authorities: Port Arthur mother financed son’s escape pad, vehicle after fatal hit-and-run

A Port Arthur mother suspected of renting an apartment in her name to hide her adult son wanted in connection with a 2019 roadside death was indicted this week by a Jefferson County grand jury.

Mary Ann Lock Sanders, 64, was indicted for hindering apprehension for reportedly providing an apartment and vehicle for Charles Lock, 33. 

Sanders was arrested Aug. 2 on the charge with bail set at $30,000. She bonded out the same day, according to information from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

Charles Lock is a suspect in the fatal hit-and-run of Jamica Thibo, 40. He was apprehended in July in Baytown and arrested on a warrant for felon in possession of a firearm. 

In September 2019, a warrant was issued for Charles Lock for unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon. He was also a person of interest in the fatal hit and run of Thibo. 

The address on the warrant listed an apartment on Central Mall Drive as being a possible address for Lock. The apartment was being leased by his mother, Sanders.

Law enforcement went to the apartment to locate Lock and were reportedly told by Sanders that she does not speak with her son or her daughter, and she was appalled police were at her apartment and said they were probably tapping her phone, according to a probable cause affidavit. 

Several other family members were interviewed but none had helpful info to where Lock was.

Lock’s photo was placed on several social media sites in an attempt to locate him with no luck.

Several months later Sanders moved to a location on Seventh Street in Port Arthur where she currently resides, the document read.

In July, police reportedly learned Lock was driving a 2009 Audi Q5 SUV; the vehicle’s owner was listed as Sanders, who allegedly bought the vehicle in May in Houston.

Police also learned Sanders was renting and paying utilities at an apartment in Baytown, according to the affidavit.

On July 26, police along with the U.S. Marshals went to the Baytown apartment complex to speak with management. While this was happening, other law enforcement at the scene noted Lock’s vehicle parked in a discreet location a long ways from the apartment building. That’s when apartment management reportedly said Sanders had been renting the apartment — located in an elderly assisted living complex — since March.

Police were given a key to the apartment and were told no other person was living there. Law enforcement reportedly knocked several times as another officer noted a man trying to jump off the second story balcony. 

Police immediately breached the door and found Lock inside, and he was arrested without incident.

During a sweep of the apartment, police noted no signs of a female living there, the affidavit read. There was reportedly a blow-up mattress in the bedroom and only male clothing inside the apartment. 

Fatal hit-and-run

Charles Lock was listed as a person of interest in the Oct. 9, 2019 death of Jamica Thibo, authorities believing he struck the victim and left the scene without rendering aid.

Thibo, 40, of Port Arthur was riding his bicycle while wearing reflective clothing and with a reflector on the front wheel of the bicycle when he was struck and killed in the 3000 block of Savannah Avenue near Motiva.

Surveillance video from Motiva shows Thibo on the bike traveling northbound. The video also shows a newer model white, four-door Dodge Ram pull up and stop at a red light at Savannah and 25th Street.

After the victim is struck — which happened at approximately 9:17 p.m. Oct. 9, 2019 — the unidentified driver leaves the scene only to park nearby, get out and survey the damage to his truck before leaving again.

The victim was discovered six hours later by Motiva security in the 3000 block of Savannah Avenue.

The truck police believe struck Thibo was found abandoned at Timber Creek Apartments near the back of the complex. The front passenger side of the vehicle had extensive damage.

An indictment is not a final conviction of guilt; it is only a ruling by the grand jury that allows the district attorney’s office to proceed with a criminal case.