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Vian man faces eluding charge

Friday, December 16, 2022 - A felony arrest warrant was filed Dec. 13 for a Vian man charged with attempting to elude a police officer, according to court records.

Jefferson Smithson, 54, could face up to a year in prison, a fine of up to $2,000 or both if he is convicted.

Shortly before midnight on Nov. 22, a Sequoyah County sheriff’s deputy was traveling east on Highway 100 near 4498 Road when he spotted a westbound motorcycle with inoperable tag lights. The deputy turned around to conduct a traffic stop and the motorcycle suddenly accelerated.

The deputy activated his emergency lights and siren on his patrol unit and began pursuing the motorcyclist, but he lost sight of the motorcycle at the intersection of 4490 and 970 Road

As the deputy drove out of the area, he observed three males standing in a yard where he had last seen the motorcycle. One of the males was wearing a black leather jacket and had the same build as the driver of the motorcycle, so he went to make contact with the men.

Once in the yard, the deputy noticed that the male wearing the jacket was gone. He asked the two where the other person had gone and one of the subjects said, “He went in the trailer house” and went inside to ask him to come and speak to the deputy.

When he exited the home, Stimson was no longer wearing the leather jacket but was still wearing rider-style lace-up shoes. Stimson stated that he had taken the jacket off and left it inside the residence. He said he did not live at that address, instead telling the officer he lived a few residences west of where they were.

The deputy asked Stimson if he had any motorcycles and Stimson said he did but that it was at a friend’s house.

While speaking with Stimson, the deputy noticed that his left hand was bleeding. When asked what happened, Stimson said he had scraped it on something inside the trailer. Stimson was extremely nervous, according to the deputy’s report. The deputy asked Stimson if he was the one who had just eluded him, and Stimson assured him that he was not that person.

But, while leaving the property, the deputy noticed a motorcycle covered with a tarp in the yard of the residence. Lifting up the tarp, the officer involved in the pursuit recognized the bike as the one he had been chasing. The motorcycle’s engine was still warm, the report said. The motorcycle also had fresh dirt on the right foot peg and the bug shield was broken, indicating that it had recently been wrecked.

The deputy went back to the residence and asked Stimson to come back outside. When he did, officers showed him the motorcycle. Stimson reportedly said he didn’t do anything. Asked why he had lied about his motorcycle’s location, Stimson stated that he didn’t know why he was being questioned.

The deputy told Stimson he knew he was the person who eluded him and that he would be filing for an arrest warrant.

Laura Brown, Staff Writer

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