Conroe, March 30 – 435th District Judge Patty Maginnis sentenced Antoine Newsome, 26, of Miama, Florida, to 65 years in prison for the Third Degree Felony offense of Evading Arrest of a Motor Vehicle. In real people’s terms, Newsome is car thief and carjacker.
Newsome pled guilty last month to pending charge and requested that Judge McGinnis assess his punishment. During the punishment hearing, prosecutors Rob Freyer and Wes Leroaux provided evidence of Newsome’s extensive criminal history. Newsome’s criminal history includes a number of felony offenses committed in Miami-Dade County, Florida, such as a Robbery in 2009 and Possession of a Controlled Substance in 2011. In addition, Freyer and Leroaux presented sufficient evidence during the sentencing hearing that resulted Judge McGinnis making an affirmative finding that the defendant used and exhibited a motor vehicle as a deadly weapon in his effort to flee from marked patrol units from no fewer than six different police agencies from both Harris and Montgomery County.
Prosecutors presented evidence that this defendant’s crime spree began in the early hours of November 9, 2012, when he car-jacked, at gunpoint, the vehicle of two individuals who were getting gas at the Chevron station located at Interstate 45 and Parramatta. During the hearing, a second victim testified that he had stopped at a Texaco station in the 3200 block of Cypresswood around 2:30 PM, to inflate the tires on his vehicle, when he was approached by a lone individual with a semiautomatic pistol, who put the victim on the ground at gunpoint and fled the scene.
Prosecutors then called to the stand, Corporal Kevin Pickerill from the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department, who had been working a security job on the same date at the Donohos Jewelry Store in the Woodlands Mall. Pickerill stated at approximately 2:50 PM, he noticed an individual acting suspiciously and standing next to a white Mercedes which had been parked in front of the store for over ten minutes, and in his attempt to approach the vehicle, the individual entered the vehicle and fled the scene. The quick-thinking deputy was able to obtain the license plate of the car, and after he reported it to dispatch, he learned that the vehicle had been taken in aggravated robbery in Harris County, less than 30 minutes earlier.
Prosecutors then called Officer Courtney Pullen from the Shenandoah Police Department, who testified that minutes after hearing this information over the radio, she observed the same vehicle in front of the Zales Jewelry Story in the Portofino Shopping Center. Officer Pullen testified that she followed the vehicle out of the parking lot into the city of Oak Ridge North, and continued following the suspect through rush hour traffic through the city and back onto Interstate 45 southbound. Oak Ridge North Officer Ralph Craig testified that he assumed the lead position in the chase of this stolen vehicle, which the suspect drove at speeds of over 140 miles per hour before finally jumping from the vehicle and fleeing on foot at the intersection of Interstate 45 and FM 2920. Officer Craig testified that he took the defendant into custody while he was walking on the sidewalk of a strip center located less than one quarter mile away.
As the hearing progressed, Freyer proved up that this defendant had been arrested in Florida on no fewer than 25 times. Prosecutors also called to the stand a Special Agent from the Miami Field office of the Drug Enforcement Administration, who testified regarding this defendant being involved in a large scale cocaine starting and Miami and ranging to multiple neighboring states, that approximately one month before Newsome came to the Houston area, that he found this defendant to be in possession of another loaded 9mm semiautomatic pistol on a traffic stop, and that based upon his involvement in the narcotics trade and his numerous brushes with law enforcement, that this defendant was a substantial danger to any community in which he appeared. Prosecutors also presented evidence that this defendant’s DNA was found to be on a knit cap which was located at the scene of a 29 year-old man in Miami, two months before embarking on this crime spree here. The State proved that the defendant had already entered a plea of guilty to the First Degree felony offense of aggravated robbery in Harris County in 2015, in exchange for a sentence of 10 years, and a plea of guilty of Felon in Possession of a Firearm in Federal Court in Miami, in exchange for a sentence of 57 months.
Chief Prosecutor Rob Freyer, a superstar of criminal prosecution in the District Attorney’s Office, said, “We would like to commend the hard work of all of the officers involved in this investigation, especially those who put their lives in harm’s way during the pursuit of this vehicle, in order to protect and ensure the safety of countless members of the community who were merely going about the business of their daily lives. Their persistence and dedication ensured that an extremely violent criminal will be In prison for a very long time.”