Port Arthur man allegedly stole truck, ran from deputies while taking off shoes

Published 12:18 am Saturday, February 17, 2024

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A Port Arthur man who allegedly lied to law enforcement about a disabled vehicle in traffic reportedly ran from deputies while taking off his shoes and clothes.

Authorities say he was later found near a church and indicted this week for two crimes.

Shortly before noon Dec. 19, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office deputies were called to check a pickup truck with a flatbed trailer that was disabled in the lane of travel in the area of Texas 347 and FM 366 in Nederland.

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The deputy said in an affidavit for arrest warrant he saw a man that was wearing a dark colored long sleeve shirt with light blue jeans, white tennis shoes, baseball cap and was wearing a yellow reflector vest at the Chevrolet truck that had emergency flashers on.

The deputy asked the man what happened to the vehicle, and he reportedly said it ran out of gas and his boss was on the way to pick him up.

But when asked what company he worked for, he couldn’t answer.

While gathering more information, dispatched informed the officer the vehicle was reported stolen from LaPorte.

The man, identified as Jeffery Coats, 38, was asked to walk to the patrol unit, but once he did, he reportedly took off running toward Texas 347. During the chase, Coats allegedly began taking off his shoes and clothes.

Deputies lost sight of him while running behind several businesses.

After searching the area he was found and taken into custody at Cornerstone Church near Texas 347, the document read.

He was charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle with bond set at $7,000 and evading arrest/detention with bond set at $3,000. He bonded out on Christmas Day, according to information from the JCSO.

Coats was indicted on the felony crimes this week by a Jefferson County grand jury.