Palestine PD Seek Suspect After Shots Fired

Special to The Messenger

ANDERSON COUNTY –  Mar. 4, at approximately 8:55 p.m., Palestine Police Department officers were dispatched to the area of Spring St. and W. Oak St. for a report of shots fired. The

caller indicated he heard about four shots from two different guns. Detective J.

Waldon and Officer L. Medina responded and spoke with a person on W. Oak, later

identified as the original caller. This witness indicated he heard four to five additional

shots and indicated they were coming from a nearby residence, later identified as 1014

W. Debard St. 

Officers responded to this location and observed several persons who

appeared to be intoxicated on the property with two vehicles, each emitting loud music in

violation of the Palestine city ordinance prohibiting unreasonable noise.

Officers contacted an intoxicated male who was standing near one of the vehicles and

requested his identification. The male, later identified as 28-year-old Francisco Sias, refused

to identify himself, told officers they had no right to be on his property and demanded

the officers leave. After requesting his identification several times and being refused,

officers informed this subject he was under arrest. Officer Medina attempted to place

Sias in custody and the subject resisted arrest, using force against Officer Medina

while several other family members on scene attempted to interfere. 

Sias’ spouse, later identified as Maribel Estrada Valenzuela, 27, got between Officer Medina and Sias and tried to physically prevent his arrest. Officer Medina was able to take Sias to the ground and handcuff him, while Detective Waldon held back the family members who were attempting to interfere. 


Once arrested, Sias was found to have a loaded .22 caliber revolver in his pocket and four of the rounds in the gun had been fired. There was one live round remaining. Additionally, several shell casings were located near his vehicle and a rifle of matching caliber was located inside the pickup.

There were several small children in and around Sias M’s vehicle, including children

seated on top of the cab when officers arrived. Due to Sias M’s level of intoxication, the

evidence he recently fired rounds in close proximity to the children and because he

was belligerent and initiated a physical confrontation with police while armed, he created

a situation where numerous small children younger than 15 years of age were placed in

substantial risk of imminent danger of death, bodily injury or physical or mental

impairment. He was therefore charged with felony Child Endangerment in addition to

Maribel Estrada Valenzuela

Resisting Arrest, Fail to Identify and Loud Music.

Maribel was placed in handcuffs and secured in a patrol vehicle and she also initially

refused to identify herself. She was later released from custody so she could help

tend to a special needs individual in the residence reportedly having a seizure. EMS

responded to assist.

Throughout the incident, a male later identified as 33-year-old Orlando Estrada berated and

threatened officers in an apparent attempt to coax them into an altercation. He stated he

had weapons in the residence and when confronted, he would retreat inside. Officers did

not force the issue at the scene, as they did not wish to place the numerous children at

the location in any additional danger by pursuing Orlando when he would flee to hide

Orlando Estrada

amongst them inside. Officers could see surveillance cameras at the location and were informed the cameras were recording, but the residents would not voluntarily turn over the footage.

Sias was booked at the Anderson County Jail. The following day, PPD officers executed a

search warrant at the residence and an arrest warrant for Maribel Valenzuela for Interference with Public Duties and she was booked at the Anderson County Jail.

A warrant for Orlando was obtained for Obstruction or Retaliation, but he was not at the

location and is currently at large. Please contact the PPD or Anderson County Sheriff’s Office if you have information regarding his whereabouts.

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