Martin Estrada has always been a bit of a flight risk, according to his criminal history in Taylor County.
Before Wednesday, he’d already been convicted of either evading or resisting arrest — in addition to other crimes — four times: twice in 2009, then again in 2012 and 2014. Estrada also has another evading charge making its way through the courts in Texas.
But police say Estrada, 31, just keeps trying to run away from them. On Wednesday, the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office put out a news release saying it was him caught on a viral Facebook video riding on top of a deputy’s patrol car.
Estrada was being transferred to the Taylor County Jail from the Wichita County Jail, about 140 miles to the northeast, to face charges of (again) evading arrest, aggravated robbery, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell it, according to the news release.
The Taylor County deputy assigned to escort Estrada hadn’t even driven 30 miles down U.S. 277 before Estrada had managed to wiggle one wrist out of his handcuffs, the release states. Police say he punched through the cruiser’s back windshield and threatened to commit suicide if the deputy didn’t stop the patrol car along the highway.
The deputy didn’t stop, though, video shows. After police say Estrada climbed out through the now-breezy back windshield, Jennifer Mustain, a passenger in the car behind the deputy, started filming the suspect riding down the highway on top of the cruiser.
“When he and the cop passed us he had the back door opened with his foot hanging out,” Mustain told McClatchy. “We didn’t know what to think. I just started recording because I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.”
Mustain posted to Facebook Wednesday afternoon, and it had been shared more than 4,000 times when she changed the privacy settings for her profile.
“The deputy made the determination to not stop the vehicle until Wichita County officers arrived to assist,” because they were still much closer to Wichita Falls than they were to Abilene, the release states.
The suspect atop the deputy’s car appears content with the wind in his hair and only one handcuff fastened for most of the woman’s video. About three minutes into the four-minute clip, two Wichita County Sheriff’s Office SUV’s can be seen speeding past the car in which the woman is riding.
At that point, the Taylor County deputy puts on the brakes and slows to a stop. The suspect can be seen jumping off the vehicle before deputies with guns drawn converge on him.
“Once the deputy pulled over, the prisoner tried to flee but was ‘Tased’ and re-handcuffed,” according to the release.
With the damage done to the Taylor County deputy’s car, Wichita County deputies carried Estrada the rest of the way. He was booked into the Taylor County Jail Wednesday and charged on 10 counts, according to jail records: five related to prior and the more recent evading charges, two counts of burglary, two counts of possession of meth with intent to sell and the one count of unauthorized use of a vehicle.
His total bond is $680,000.