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Woman Bares All During Police Chase

By Will Johnson

Messenger Reporter

HOUSTON COUNTY – A Palestine woman is behind bars in Houston County after she led law enforcement officers on a two-county vehicle chase. Possibly – to decrease the drag and increase her vehicle’s aerodynamics, the woman disrobed at some point during the pursuit. True story.

Cynthia Louise McGill, 44, was taken into custody and charged with evading arrest and assaulting a public servant after a high-speed chase – which began in Anderson County – came to an end on the outskirts of Lovelady.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, Grapeland Police Officer Thomas Shafer was on patrol during the evening hours of Saturday, June 13 when he “… was advised by Houston County Dispatch that Anderson County Sheriff’s Office (ACSO) deputies were in an active pursuit of a white GMC Yukon, southbound on (US Highway) 287 towards and into Houston County.”  

Officer Shafer joined the pursuit north of Grapeland and when he did, the (ACSO) deputies pulled back to allow Shafer to “… move into the primary position.”

Traveling at speeds of up to 90 mph, Shafer was joined in the pursuit by Houston County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) deputies, near Cutshaw Chevrolet.

“The pursuit continued southbound through Latexo and towards Crockett. On the north side of Crockett – just north of Loop 304 – officers with the Crockett Police Department deployed spike strips in an attempt to make the vehicle’s tires deflate,” the affidavit reported.

The deployment of the spike strips was successful, but the driver – later identified as McGill – continued on into the city of Crockett, the report stated.

“The vehicle lost the front right tire on South 4th Street, just south of the HCSO. The suspect vehicle continued south on 4th Street onto Highway 19 South and through Lovelady. At times the vehicle, now driving on two front rims as both front tires had come off the vehicle was observed swerving into oncoming traffic and continued to travel at high rates of speed,” the affidavit stated.

When the vehicle passed through Crockett, officers with the Crockett Police Department joined the chase. As the pursuit passed through Lovelady, Crockett Police Lt. Lonnie Lum was able to get in front of the vehicle and managed to slow it down, somewhat.

Just south of Lovelady, Shafer was able to get close of enough to the vehicle to push it into a guardrail on the west side of the roadway.

“The vehicle came to a complete stop and the defendant (McGill), being the only occupant inside the vehicle, was pulled from inside, as she was not following orders to get out of the vehicle, and she was detained. The defendant was naked upon being located inside the vehicle and was later given a robe at the Crockett ER, where she was taken for medical clearance,” the affidavit indicated.

Shafer stayed with the vehicle until the scene was cleared and then headed back to Crockett Medical Center to help in processing McGIll.

As he neared the ER, Shafer heard Lum radio for assistance as McGill had become combative and kicked him in the chest. The affidavit also reported she bent one of Lum’s fingers backwards while the nursing staff was attempting to administer treatment. McGill also allegedly tried to bite one of the nurses during this time.

Eventually, McGill was medically cleared and transported to the Houston County Jail where she was booked into custody on one count of evading arrest/detention in a motor vehicle (state jail felony) and one count of assaulting a public servant, a third degree felony.

According to Section 12.34 of the Texas Penal Code, “An individual adjudged guilty of a felony of the third degree shall be punished by imprisonment in the institutional division for any term of not more than 10 years or less than two years. In addition to imprisonment, an individual adjudged guilty of a felony of the third degree may be punished by a fine not to exceed $10,000.”

A state jail felony is punishable by a term of no more than two years and no less than 180 days in a state jail facility. It also carries a fine of up to $10,000. 

McGill is still held at the Houston County Jail on a total bond of $18,000.

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at wjohnson@messenger-news.com.   

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