Pursuit leads to search, then a human smuggling arrest

On Saturday, suspect leads Sheriff's deputies on pursuit before being captured

He made a run for it, and the law won on Saturday.

Kerr County Sheriff's deputies arrested Jaime Vicente Montes, 22, of Memphis, Texas, on suspicion of smuggling illegal immigrants through the state. Montes, according to authorities, led deputies on a brief chase that ended on the grounds of the USDA's Knipling-Bushland Research Laboratory property.

"We are pleased to have this suspect in custody," Kerr County Sheriff Larry Leitha said. "This was another strong interagency effort from the city, county, and federal level to stop human trafficking. Through the cooperative work between KCSO SIU and Patrol divisions, KPD, TPWD, Homeland Security, and Texas DPS, this suspect was taken into custody. With the dire situation on the border coming closer and closer to Kerrville, this kind of teamwork will be required to protect our communities. Our SIU and Patrol divisions will continue to pursue and arrest those who violate our laws and make millions for criminal cartels through human smuggling."


Deputies learned about Montes via an alert of a stolen truck heading west on Interstate 10 from San Antonio. The stolen truck, which authorities accused Montes of driving, evaded Texas Department of Public Safety Troopers. Eventually, the truck made its way into Kerr County, where deputies spotted it at mile mark 517.

The truck exited at exit 508 and Texas 16 at a high rate of speed. It could not handle the intersection, crashing into an embankment on the intersection's west side. The driver fled the truck and hopped over the fence into the USDA Knipling-Bushland Research Laboratory property.

With the assistance of the Kerrville Police Department, Texas Parks and Wildlife, Texas DPS and a dog unit from Kimble County Sheriff's Office, a perimeter was established to flush out the suspect. A helicopter from the Department of Homeland Security helped locate the suspect.

Montes was taken into custody and told authorities he was smuggling immigrants, including dropping two off in Austin before being caught.

Montes was booked into the Kerr County Jail on two counts of human smuggling, evading arrest or detention, and one count of criminal trespass, with bonds totaling $111,500. Montes is currently subject of an immigration detainer from the Department of Homeland Security and is being held without bond on that detainer.

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