Phone Scam 04/02/2105

For Immediate Release:

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office has received several reports about a phone call scam using the Orange County Sheriff’s Office name to solicit money from unsuspecting victims.  The scammer tells the person receiving the phone call that there is an active warrant for the person answering the phone.  The person is then told that in order to avoid being arrested, the person must purchase some type of gift card for a specific amount and provide the card number to the caller.  The caller may also mention that the warrant is in reference to failing to respond to a Grand Jury Subpoena.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office is warning the public that this is a scam.  The Orange County Sheriff’s Office will not call anyone and ask for a payment to be made over the phone.

Currently, the only known identified phone number used by the suspect so far in this scam is 409-238-0229.   If you receive a suspicious, unsolicited phone call from anyone who identifies themselves as the Orange County Sheriff’s Office or a Deputy asking or demanding money, please call the Orange County Sheriff’s Office Orange area number at 409-883-2612, or the Vidor area number at 409-769-0291 to make a report.  Again, do not provide the caller any payment over the phone as this is a scam.

Posted in News Release

Narcotics Search Warrant 03/26/2015

For Immediate Release:

On Wednesday, March 25, 2015, around 9:00 PM, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office conducted a narcotics search warrant at a residence located at 9380 Terri Road off of FM 1136 in Mauriceville, Texas.   During the search of the residence, Narcotics Officers seized in excess of five pounds of high-grade marihuana, over 100 ecstasy tablets and numerous psilocybin (hallucinogenic) mushrooms that were packaged for sale.

A total of eight persons were arrested during the warrant for possession of marihuana and possession of a controlled substance, and one person was arrested for outstanding warrants.

The persons arrested were:

Justin Scales, W/M, 19 year old from Orange, Texas (still in custody)

-Possession of Marihuana-Class B -$500 bond

-Possession of a Controlled Substance- $15,000 bond

Tyler Richard, B/M, 19 year old from Orange, Texas (still in custody)

-Possession of Marihuana-Class B -$500 bond

-Possession of a Controlled Substance- $15,000 bond

James Truett, W/M, 46 year old from Lake Charles, Louisiana (still in custody)

-Possession of Marihuana-Class B -$500 bond

-Possession of a Controlled Substance- $15,000 bond

James Montano, W/M, 37 year old from Orange, Texas (still in custody)

-Possession of Marihuana-Class B -$500 bond

-Possession of a Controlled Substance- $15,000 bond

Jacob Alred, W/M, 19 year old from Orange, Texas (made bail, out of custody)

-Possession of Marihuana-Class B -$500 bond

-Possession of a Controlled Substance- $15,000 bond

 

Floyd Winters III, B/M, 38 year old from Orange, Texas (out of custody)

-Possession of a Marihuana-Felony 3-$15,000 bond

-Possession of a Controlled Substance-Felony 2-$15,000

-2nd count of Possession of a Controlled Substance-Felony 2-$15,000

-Total bond of $45,000, made bail and no longer in custody.

 

Robert Hicks, W/M, 42 year old from Orange, Texas (still in custody)

-Possession of Marihuana-Class B- $1,000 bond

 

Justin Williams, W/M, 34 year old from Orange, Texas (out of custody)

-Bad Check Issuance-$500 bond, made bail 3-26-15

This search warrant was the product of a month long joint investigation by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office Special Services Division and the City of Orange Police Department’s Narcotics and Major Crimes unit.  Sheriff Keith Merritt will continue to dedicate all necessary resources to combat illegal drug activities in our communities.

Posted in News Release

Body Recovered 03/19/2015

For Immediate Release:

UPDATE:  3-20-2015 @ 4:00 p.m.

On Friday, March 20, 2015, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office continued the investigation into the identity of the body of a man found under the Rainbow Bridge on Thursday, March 19, 2015.  The man was believed to be the same man who was reported missing and believed to have jumped from the Veterans Memorial Bridge on March 6, 2015.  The vehicle he had been driving was left parked on top of the bridge.  An extensive search and rescue operation was conducted that day, but nothing was found at that time.  Cold water temperatures tend to keep a person submerged until the water temperature rises.

When he was found on Thursday, his body was transported to the Jefferson County Morgue for an autopsy into the cause of death.  The preliminary autopsy report indicates the cause of death was drowning.  No foul play is suspected.  The man has been identified as 25 year old David Van Nguyen of Port Arthur, Texas.  The family has been notified by authorities.

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On Thursday, March 19, 2015, around 12:40 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received a report from a construction worker on the Rainbow Bridge who spotted what he believed to be a human body on a beach below the Rainbow Bridge.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office responded to the area in the Sheriff’s Office airboat and was assisted by the Port Arthur Police Department.  The body found was that of an adult male.  It is believed to be the body of a missing person from March 6, 2015; however, positive identification has not been made.  Justice of the Peace of Precinct 3 Judge Joy Dubose-Simonton responded to the scene and ordered an autopsy.  The body was then transported to the Jefferson County Morgue.  More details will be released as they become available.

Posted in News Release

Narcotics Search Warrant 03/05/2015

 For Immediate Release:

On Thursday, March 5, 2015, around 12:20 a.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office conducted a search warrant at a residence in the 700 block of Coleman St., just outside the city limits of Vidor, Orange County, Texas.

During the search of the residence, Deputies located 32 grams of methamphetamine, a small amount of marijuana, a few illegally possessed prescription drugs, and an illegally modified .22 caliber rifle.  The occupant of the residence, 37 year old white male Richard David Shock of Vidor, was arrested and taken to the Orange County Jail.

Shock was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance-2nd Degree Felony, Possession of a Controlled Substance-State Jail Felony, Possession of Marijuana-Class B Misdemeanor, and Possession of a Firearm by a Felon-3rd Degree Felony.  He remains in custody after being arraigned and his bond is set at $34,500.

Drug Arrest 3-5-2015 Shock, Richard David

Posted in News Release

Narcotics Arrest 03/04/2015

For Immediate Release:

On Wednesday, March 4, 2015, around 9:20 p.m., an Orange County Sheriff’s Office Deputy was on patrol in the area of FM 1131 and Claire Road in Orange County, Texas, when he observed a white Chevy Avalanche commit several traffic violations.

The vehicle was stopped by the Deputy near Lake View Cutoff Rd and FM 1131.  During the traffic stop, the Deputy searched the vehicle and found a loaded handgun in the driver side door panel, along with methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia inside the vehicle.  An amount of methamphetamine was also found on the driver, which totaled over 28 grams of methamphetamine.  The driver was identified as 36 year old white male Blake Owen Buxton of Orange.  Buxton was placed under arrest and transported to the Orange County Jail.

Buxton was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance-2nd Degree Felony and Unlawfully Carrying a Weapon-Class A Misdemeanor.  He was arraigned on March 5, 2015 and his bond was set at $17,200.  He made bond and was released from custody on March 5, 2015 at 10:00 a.m.

Buxton, Blake Owen Drug Arrest 3-4-2015

Posted in News Release

Theft in North Vidor 02/24/2015

For Immediate Release:

On February 18, 2015, a theft of an enclosed trailer occurred at Turning Point Church, 3600 North Main St. in Vidor, Texas.  The incident was captured on surveillance cameras.  Around 11:34 p.m., a dark colored truck entered the parking lot of the church with the headlights turned off.  The suspect attached the trailer and left the area.  The trailer is described as a 2008 Blazer enclosed 8 ft. utility trailer, white in color, which had a Texas license plate of 83Z XCS.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office is asking for any information that may lead to the recovery of the stolen trailer and prosecution of the suspect.  Please call the Sheriff’s Office at (409) 883-2612 or (409) 769-0291.

Click on the link below to watch the video.

Turning Point Church Theft

 

Posted in News Release

Boat Rescue 02/14/2015

For Immediate Release:

On Saturday, February 14, 2015 around 3:18 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a stranded boater.  The caller stated that he and his partner were from Minnesota and were pre-fishing the upcoming Elite Series Bass Tournament in March. They had gone off the main river channel and were trying to reach a location he saw on his Google map.  Unfortunately, their bass boat got stuck on a mud flat, which was compounded further with the outgoing tide.  It ultimately led to the fishermen being stranded.

The Sheriff’s Office Dispatcher passed on the information to Sheriff Merritt who spoke with the fishermen by phone.  It was decided that an airboat would be necessary to reach the stranded men.  Their boat was approximately 1 mile from the main river channel in an area south of IH-10.  The men were concerned about it getting late in the day and they did not want to remain stranded all night.

Sheriff Merritt located the fishermen deep into the marsh and was able to hook onto the big bass boat and pull them to the main channel.  It took about 2 hours and it was all the airboat could handle pulling such a heavy boat through the mud.

Needless to say the boaters were extremely grateful, and had a very muddy bass boat to clean afterwards.

Posted in News Release

Death Investigation 01/31/2015

For Immediate Release:

 
UPDATE:  February 3, 2015 @ 1:30 p.m.

The autopsy of Jason Murray Smith was completed this morning at the Jefferson County Morgue.  The preliminary result indicated that Mr. Smith’s death was not caused by any type of physical altercation.  While there is no confirmation on what caused the death of Mr. Smith at this time, the toxicology results will take several more weeks to return.  The investigation is ongoing while awaiting those results and more information may be released as it becomes available.

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UPDATE:  February 2, 2015 @ 3:35 p.m.

The name of the 34 year old man from Kirbyville who died is Jason Murray Smith.  The autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, February 3, 2015.  It remains unknown what caused Smith’s death and no charges have been filed at this time.  The investigation is ongoing and more information may be released as it becomes available.

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On Saturday, January 31, 2015, at 7:45 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Baptist Hospital in Orange, Texas in reference to a death investigation.  The preliminary investigation into the death revealed that a 34 year old white male from Kirbyville, Texas and a 40 year old white male from Bridge City, Texas were at a residence in the 3500 block of Beadle Road in the Orangefield area of Orange County.  It was reported that they were involved in a physical altercation with each other when the 34 year old man lost consciousness.  The other man put him in his personal vehicle and drove him to the hospital in Orange where authorities were notified.

Investigators were on scene at the hospital and the residence to investigate the incident further and collect any evidence available.  It is unknown at this time what actually caused the death of the man and an autopsy has been ordered by Justice of the Peace Precinct 2 Judge Dunn.  The 40 year old man is cooperating with Investigators and no arrest has been made at this time.  The name of the deceased man is being withheld until notification can be made with family members.  More information may be released later as it becomes available.

Posted in News Release

Death Investigation 01/01/2015

For Immediate Release:

***UPDATE:  January 7, 2015 @ 2:00 p.m.

The body of the man found in a wooded area on January 1, 2015 has been identified as Jose Eluid Vargas, a 35 year old Hispanic male from Mission, Texas.  Vargas was listed as a missing person from Hidalgo County, Texas since December 15, 2014.  The preliminary autopsy report indicates the cause of death remains unknown at this time.  The toxicology report is pending.  The investigation into Vargas’s death is ongoing.  More information will be released as it becomes available.

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On Thursday, January 1, 2015, around 3:30 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received a call in reference to the discovery of human remains.  The caller reported finding the human remains in a wooded area off FM1135 near FM 105 in the Orangefield area of Orange County, Texas.

When Deputies arrived in the area, the caller directed the Deputies to a wooded area off FM 1135 where they found the remains of what appeared to be a Hispanic male.  The body was unclothed and decomposing.  Detectives believe the body had possibly been at the location for several weeks.  Detectives are currently trying to determine the identity of the male.  Detectives will be on scene throughout the night and into the morning when day light will allow for a better search of the area for evidence.  The cause of death remains unknown until the autopsy can be completed.

Justice of the Peace Precinct 2 Judge Dunn arrived on scene and ordered an autopsy.  The body was transported to the Jefferson County Morgue.  The investigation is ongoing and more information will be released as it becomes available.

Posted in News Release

Shooting Incident 01/01/2015

For Immediate Release:

***UPDATE:  January 5, 2015 @ 4:10 p.m.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office has received the preliminary autopsy report on the cause of death for William Bloomer.  The report revealed that Mr. Bloomer died from gunshot wounds.  Two shots were fired from a .40 caliber handgun the morning of the incident and both struck Mr. Bloomer, mortally wounding him.  The toxicology report will not be available for several more weeks.

The investigation is ongoing and more information may be released later when available.

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On Thursday, January 1, 2015, at 3:06 a.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received an emergency call in reference to a possible intruder at a home in the 1500 block of Sawmill Road, Vidor, Orange County, Texas.  It was reported that when the homeowner located a lone intruder, the homeowner engaged the man with a handgun and fatally shot the man.

When Deputies arrived, they located the deceased man at the residence and began an investigation into the incident.  Detectives were also called to the scene.  It was discovered through the investigation that the deceased man had been at a New Year’s Eve party in the 800 block of Sawmill Road earlier.  According to witnesses at the party, the man was extremely intoxicated and left the residence on foot without anyone’s knowledge.  The man went to the residence in the 1500 block where he began to force entry into the home.  When the homeowner found the man in his home, he engaged him with his handgun.  Based on early information in the investigation, Detectives believe the man may have been intoxicated to a degree that he was mistakenly forcing his way into a home that he may have believed to be his own or someone he knew.  The homeowner, however, did not know the man.

The deceased man has been identified as William Bloomer, a 38 year old white male from Vidor, Texas.  Detectives are still investigating the incident and an autopsy is scheduled for Saturday, January 3, 2015.  No charges have been filed on the homeowner and the investigation is ongoing.

Posted in News Release

Offices

Emergency: 911

Non-Emergency: (409) 883-2612

Orange Office

205 S. Border

Mauriceville Substation

11867 Highway 62 North

(409) 882-7913

Vidor Substation

375 Claiborne Street

(409) 769-6391