Lufkin police identify bank robbery suspect who died in crash while fleeing police

Crime

UPDATE:

LUFKIN, Texas (KETK) – Lufkin police officials have identified the suspect in Thursday night’s pursuit as LeEdward Hopkins, 43, of Houston.

Hopkins and another man, identified as 42-year-old Tony Mitchell of Houston, are accused of robbing First State Bank of Louise near Houston at gunpoint. Authorities say the two men fled the bank in Wharton with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Wharton police and the Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division identified the suspects and began working to locate them.

At around 7 p.m., DPS received information that Hopkins was in the Lufkin area, headed north on Loop 287 in a black Dodge Challenger. A Lufkin police officer saw the vehicle near the intersection of Old Moffett Road around 7:10 p.m. He initiated a traffic stop, but Hopkins refused to pull over.

Hopkins continued on to U.S. 59 North toward Nacogdoches as multiple agencies, including Pct. 1 Constable Tom Selman, joined the pursuit. Selman attempted to shoot out Hopkins’ back tire but was unsuccessful.

Hopkins broke away from law enforcement as he neared Nacogdoches city limits, reaching speeds of more than 130 mph. He lost control of the vehicle after one of his tires was spiked near Woodland Hills Golf Course. 

The vehicle veered off the road, hit a power pole and went airborne into a tree before eventually coming to a stop in a tree line near the 12th hole. The car’s engine block caught fire, but it had been thrown from the vehicle.

Hopkins apparently died on impact.

An undisclosed amount of cash was recovered from the vehicle, along with a loaded pistol and additional magazines. Mitchell was not with Hopkins at the time of the crash and remains at large.

Angelina County Sheriff’s Office, Nacogdoches County Sheriff’s Office and Nacogdoches County constables also assisted with the incident.

Lufkin PD released videos and photos of the chase and its aftermath.

ORIGINAL STORY:

LUFKIN, Texas (KETK) – Lufkin police and the Texas Department of Public Safety are assisting with a vehicle crash after an armed robbery at Houston-area Bank Thursday night.

After 7:00 p.m. Lufkin police were on pursuit of a vehicle on Loop 287 at Old Moffett Road of an armed suspect that robbed Houston-area Bank, according to police.

When the officer initiated a traffic stop, the suspect refused to stop and continued on U.S. 59 north at speeds near 100 mph.

The suspect continued north toward Nacogdoches until he wrecked out near the 12th hole at Woodland Hills Golf Course.

The suspect died on impact.

INCIDENT: We are assisting the Texas Department of Public Safety with a vehicle crash on U.S. 59 north at Woodland Hills…

Posted by Lufkin Police & Fire on Thursday, September 12, 2019

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