Vehicle Pursuit From Falfurrias Checkpoint Results In Significant Sentence
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Nelson Alanis-Alanis, 29, of Palmview, has been handed a significant sentence following his conviction for possession with intent to distribute approximately 96 kilograms of marijuana, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Alanis-Alanis pleaded guilty on April 19, 2013.
Today, Senior U.S. District Judge Hayden Head handed Alanis-Alanis a sentence of 135 months in federal prison to be followed by a three-year-term of supervised release.
At the hearing, Judge Head heard testimony from Border Patrol agents that Alanis-Alanis drove a 2004 Freightliner tractor-trailer into the Falfurrias U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint on March 12, 2013. When he was directed by Border Patrol agents to an area for further inspection, Alanis-Alanis instead fled northbound on U.S. Highway 281 at speeds of approximately 70 miles per hour. Agents pursued the tractor-trailer and, at one point, were forced into the median by Alanis-Alanis when he jerked the wheel, bringing the tractor-trailer across both lanes of traffic and into the shoulder. Alanis-Alanis later admitted he intended to run the agents off the road.
Agents also testified that the pursuit continued through the town of Falfurrias, approximately 13 miles north of the checkpoint, where Alanis-Alanis ran a red light and narrowly missed cross-traffic. He also drove through a closed section of roadway and crashed through several barricades. Heavy equipment was in operation at the time and many construction workers fled the path of the tractor-trailer. Finally, Alanis-Alanis jumped from the tractor, leaving it running and in gear, and headed toward the grounds of an a elementary school. A Border Patrol agent ran from his vehicle and climbed into the cab of the moving tractor in order to stop it. Alanis-Alanis was apprehended shortly thereafter.
Following the testimony, Judge Head described the defendant’s behavior as “outrageous,” and indicated that what concerned him most was what happened to the two Border Patrol agents. “You attack all persons of the United States when you attack someone representing the United States and its lawful authority,” Judge Head said.
Alanis-Alanis has been and will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The case was investigated by Border Patrol and Homeland Security Investigations. Assistant United States Attorney Jeffrey D. Preston prosecuted the case.