Jeep rolls into ship channel
Ruben Trevino was booked on Class B misdemeanor charges of making a false report and leaving the scene of an accident, according to Nueces County Precinct 4 Constable Bobby Sherwood.
Trevino once worked at a waterfront business in Port Aransas but now lives in North Richland Hills, in Tarrant County, Sherwood said.
The incident occurred on Tuesday, Aug. 18. Police received a report about 5:15 a.m. that two men had been seen climbing out of the water at the south jetty and leaving on foot, Sherwood said.
Law enforcement officers responded and found a 1990 Jeep Cherokee in water several feet off the jetty, but neither of the two men were at the scene.
The car landed, grill first, on submerged rocks and remained in that position until it was pulled out. The entire car was underwater, but the rear hatchback was visible a few feet beneath the surface.
A diver fitted straps around the Jeep, and the vehicle was lifted from the water with a crane operated by Port Aransas Mayor Claude Brown, who owns a construction and demolition business.
A small crowd gathered on the south jetty and watched as the Jeep was lifted high in the air and placed on the beach. A tow truck took it away.
After some investigation, the constable’s office determined that Trevino owned the car and found him on the beach near Horace Caldwell Pier, Sherwood said.
Sherwood said Trevino told him that he loaned the car to someone to pick up some bait but that he never came back.
Sherwood also questioned Trevino’s companion, Chris Portiles, 19, of North Richland Hills. Portiles contended that Trevino drove the Jeep off the jetty, according to Sherwood. Portiles said he was the only pas- senger when the vehicle plunged into the water, the constable said.
Sherwood said he believed Portiles’ version of events. Portiles was not charged.
Trevino is believed to have become disoriented in the darkness and accidentally drove off the jetty, Sherwood said.
Trevino suffered no visible injuries. Portiles had some scrapes on his legs from climbing up barnacle-studded jetty rocks.
“They’re lucky to be alive,” Sherwood said. “Chris said he had to pull Ruben out. He said it wasn’t easy.”
Trevino was being held in city jail in Port Aransas. He was expected to be transferred to Nueces County Jail by Wednesday, Aug. 19. Bond had not been set at press time.