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April 25, 2019 - FM 699 was the scene of a major single-vehicle crash Saturday, April 20, 2019, which resulted in injury to a passenger and arrest of the driver.

The Joaquin Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to the scene to divert traffic and assist anyone involved in the crash near County Road 3695.

According to Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper Taylor Buster, at 9:45pm a white 2005 Chevrolet C1500 driven by Wayland Carl Whiteside, 35, of Center was eastbound on FM 699 when Whiteside stated he swerved to miss a deer.

Whiteside traveled at an unsafe speed as the truck rounded the curve and failed to drive in a single lane due to suspected intoxication. The truck left the roadway to the right in a side skid striking a fence and a tree before coming to rest in a field. 

Whiteside and his passenger Jose Angelo Gonzalez, 49, were both transported to Nacogdoches Medical Center - Shelby Emergency Department for possible treatment.

Whiteside was later arrested and charged with intoxication assault with vehicle, felony 3.

A tractor was used to pull the truck from the field where it came to rest and a tow truck removed it from the scene.

Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper Dustin Ramos assisted at the scene with the investigation. 

Also on scene were Shelby County Sheriff's Department, Tenaha Police Department and Constable Precinct 3.

April 25, 2019 - Commissioner Charles Barr wants to notify the public that County Road 3373 will be closed due to continued rain. Repairs will be made as weather allows.

April 25, 2019 - SH 21 East and US 96 in San Augustine will be closed to traffic immediately as emergency responders work to clear debris and restore power to the area. Traffic will be detoured downtown to SH 147 until further notice. Motorists are advised to stay clear of damaged areas and refrain from stopping and taking photos or videos through the area where workers and equipment are present.

April 25, 2019 - Following reported tornado activity in the San Augustine area, crews are now currently assessing the damage so that power restoration may begin. 

If you or someone in your household is dependent upon life support,  identify a location you can move to that has an alternate power source.

Above all, DETEC encourages everyone to keep safety a priority. Should you encounter a downed line, consider it live and dangerous. Please report all downed lines and outages to DETEC at 1(800) 392-5986.


12:09 AM CDT Thursday, April 25, 2019

April 25, 2019 - The National Weather Service in Shreveport has issued a Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory for Poor Drainage Areas for...
  Eastern Nacogdoches County in eastern Texas...
  Shelby County in eastern Texas...
  Southeastern Angelina County in eastern Texas...
  San Augustine County in eastern Texas...
  Western Sabine County in eastern Texas...

* Until 315 AM CDT.

* At 1208 AM CDT, Doppler radar indicated heavy rain due to thunderstorms. This will cause urban and small stream flooding. Overflowing poor drainage areas will result in minor flooding in the advisory area. Up to two to three inches of rain have already fallen.

* Some locations that will experience flooding include... Center, Huntington, San Augustine, Garrison, Pineland, Melrose, Patroon, Martinsville, Bland Lake, Neuville, Rosevine, Macune, Etoile, Shelbyville, Zavalla, Chireno, Huxley, Broaddus, Jericho and Stockman.


Turn around, don`t drown when encountering flooded roads. Most flood deaths occur in vehicles.

Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize the
dangers of flooding.

A Flood Advisory means river or stream flows are elevated, or ponding of water in urban or other areas is occurring or is imminent.

Update: At 1150 PM CDT, a large and extremely dangerous tornado was located near Converse, or 22 miles south of Mansfield, moving northeast at 50 mph.

Update: At 1142 PM CDT, a large and extremely dangerous tornado was located 9miles east of Patroon, or 23 miles southeast of Center, moving northeast at 50 mph.

April 24, 2019 - The National Weather Service in Shreveport has issued a Tornado Warning for Northwestern Sabine Parish in northwestern Louisiana, Southeastern Shelby County in eastern Texas, Northeastern San Augustine County in eastern Texas, Northwestern Sabine County in eastern Texas until midnight CDT.

(Updated): At 1134 PM CDT, a large and extremely dangerous tornado was located near Patroon, or 19 miles southeast of Center, moving northeast at 50


  HAZARD...Damaging tornado.

  SOURCE...Radar indicated rotation.

  IMPACT...You are in a life-threatening situation. Flying debris may be deadly to those caught without shelter. Mobile homes will be destroyed. Considerable damage to homes, businesses, and vehicles is likely and complete destruction is possible.

Locations impacted include San Augustine, Zwolle, Converse, Bland Lake, Patroon, Huxley, Noble, Hurstown, Sexton, Calgary, Toledo Bend Reservoir North and Jordans Store.


To repeat, a large, extremely dangerous and potentially deadly tornado is developing. To protect your life, TAKE COVER NOW! Move to a basement or an interior room on the lowest floor of a sturdy building. Avoid windows. If you are outdoors, in a mobile home, or in a vehicle, move to the closest substantial shelter and protect yourself from flying debris.

Tornadoes are extremely difficult to see and confirm at night. Do not wait to see or hear the tornado. TAKE COVER NOW!

April 22, 2019 - State Highway 87 South was the location of an 18-wheeler chicken hauler roll over at CR 3012, as of 7:24am April 22, 2019.

According to Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper Keith Jones, at 7:18am a maroon 2018 Kenworth owned by JBS Transportation and driven by Jeffery Harvey Undercoffler, 53, of Douglas was northbound on State Highway 87 South.

As the truck entered a curve it was traveling at an unsafe speed due to the curve and overturned with the trailer it was hauling blocking the outside northbound lane.

No injuries were reported as a result of the crash. Undercoffler was issued a citation for unsafe speed.

Center Fire Department and Shelby County Sheriff's Department assisted with traffic control at the crash scene.

Pilgrim’s Pride personnel arrived to help clear the area and a wrecker large wrecker righted the JBS Carriers hauler.

April 23, 2019 - The family of Nathaniel Cozart are seeking to find him. He was last seen on April 5, 2019 in the Shreveport area walking in the 400 block of North Market Street.

His Aunt Glenda King of Timpson reports he was traveling to Shreveport to visit a friend when he was in a crash. He reported having a bad headache following the crash.

Cozart lives outside of Mt. Enterpise and worked at Tyson Foods in Carthage. He is 49 years old, 5'6" tall and weighs approximately 160 pounds.

The family are concerned about his welfare. If you have information about the whereabouts of Nathaniel Cozart, please call Jewel Cozart at 903-392-5835.

Photos by Steve Dudley

April 23, 2019 - FM 417 was the scene of an 18-wheeler crash April 18, 2019 near the intersection of FM 2694.

According to Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper Daniel Dellenger, at 3:35pm a blue 2000 Peterbilt owner by MKO Trucking Inc. and driven by James Lee Heiman, 46, of Center was eastbound on FM 417.

The Peterbilt was hauling a tanker trailer through a curve in the roadway when Heiman failed to drive in a single lane causing the Petetbilt and trailer to overturn in the eastbound ditch.

Heiman was transported from the scene by private vehicle to Nacogdoches Medical Center - Shelby Emergency Department for possible treatment.

The Shelbyville Volunteer Fire Department diverted traffic at the scene until the truck was able to be removed by a large wrecker.

April 21, 2019 - Toledo Bend proved literally to be the end of the road for three individuals fleeing law enforcement Friday night.

A chase began in Center around 12:30-midnight April 20, 2019 in the vicinity of Center ISD High School campus when three individuals failed to comply with a Texas Department of Public Safety State Trooper who was attempting to pull over the Cadillac.

The Texas DPS Troopers had support of Shelby County SheriffDeputies, Center Police Department officers and Constable 1, 2 and 3 as the Cadillac traveled throughout the county.

Center Police Department traveled with DPS into San Augustine County and then back into Shelby County as the Cadillac continued at a high rate of speed toward the west end of the county. 

As law enforcement units closed in the Cadillac traveled FM 2261 where it finally turned on CR 2833, which would bring an abrupt halt to the suspects flight.

The trip down CR 2833 resulted in the Cadillac leaving the road and traveling off a boat ramp into an inlet of Toledo Bend. One of the individuals escaped from the vehicle and made it to a stand of trees where a Center PD K9 later helped encourage the suspect to return to the officers.

Combined efforts of Hopkins Wrecker and Vail and Son Wrecker pulled the Cadillac back to dry land.

The three suspects arrested and transported to the Shelby County Jail included:

  • Brent Denby, 25, of Center: evading with motor vehicle, felony 4; possession of a controlled Substance, felony 4; evading arrest, misdemeanor a; reckless driving, misdemeanor b; possession of marijuana, misdemeanor b; possession of drug paraphernalia, misdemeanor c.
  • Devin Jackson, 27, Center: possession of a controlled substance, felony 4; forgery, felony 3; exploitation of elderly, felony 3; possession of marijuana, misdemeanor b; possession of drug paraphernalia, misdemeanor c.
  • Lindsey Bush, 30, Center: exploitation of elderly, felony 3; forgery, felony 3.

The above pictured packages were located in the Cadillac by officers.