UPDATE: The Smith County Sheriff’s Office identified the man they say hit a deputy with his car earlier Tuesday.

At around 3 p.m. Tuesday, Smith County investigators were conducting surveillance in the area of the Pilot Truck Stop at FM 14 and I-20. They saw a suspect who had outstanding felony warrants.

Several members of Smith County SWAT and investigators with the Special Investigations Unit tried to take 17-year-old Ernesto Castellon into custody.

Deputies say that Castellon fled the location in his vehicle, hitting a SWAT team member and knocking him to the pavement.

Officers say he fled south on FM 14 toward Tyler, reaching speeds over 100 mph. As he approached the T-intersection of Pabst St. and Berta, a Smith County Deputy struck the rear of his vehicle. The driver then lost control and ran off the road into a nearby grassy area. He was taken into custody without injury.

A subsequent search of the vehicle uncovered a large amount of illegal drugs.

Castellon was transported to UT Health Tyler for precautionary measures and was released. The Smith County SWAT Team member was in good condition and will be treated at a local emergency room.

In addition to the existing warrants, investigators will obtain warrants for aggravated assault on a peace officer (Felony 1), evading arrest with a vehicle (Felony 3) and numerous manufacturing/delivery of controlled substance charges.

This arrest was a culmination of work by East Texas TAG personnel consisting of Investigators with Smith County Sheriff’s Office, Texas DPS and Tyler PD.

Ernesto Castellon

SMITH COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – The Smith County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that a deputy was injured Tuesday during a pursuit in Tyler.

According to Larry Christian with the Smith County Sheriff’s Office, the deputy was standing outside their vehicle when he was struck by the fleeing car and knocked over. Christian said the deputy is expected to be okay and is in stable condition.

The suspect is now in police custody after crashing his car on Berta Street in Tyler. The chase began on FM 14, just a few miles away.

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