Two Arrested After Truck Collision and Gunfire Incident in Lufkin

Two Arrested After Truck Collision and Gunfire Incident in Lufkin
Michael Charles Ricks and Howard Earl Griffin

Two men, Michael Charles Ricks and Howard Earl Griffin, were arrested on December 27 following an incident involving a truck collision and gunfire. The events unfolded on December 9 when Jatarious Land reported to Lufkin dispatch that his Buick sedan had been struck by a blue Ram truck on Highway 59 South near the Pentecostal Campgrounds.

According to an affidavit, Land began following the truck and relaying his location to dispatch as the vehicles moved through several streets. The truck eventually stopped, and a passenger allegedly approached Land with a pistol before returning to the truck, which then drove off again.

As the situation escalated, Land continued to provide updates to law enforcement, reporting that the truck had pulled into a driveway on Highway 103 West. Deputies were dispatched, and Land reported gunshots while waiting for their arrival. Three apparent bullet holes were later found in Land’s vehicle, and a bullet was recovered as evidence from the scene.

Deputies located Ricks and Griffin near the suspect truck. The two claimed that Land had struck their truck and fired shots at them. Griffin initially stated that Ricks had fired a warning shot, but Ricks later admitted to firing a .45 Colt handgun into the air.

Further investigation revealed conflicting accounts. Deputies found no evidence on Land that he had fired a gun, contradicting Ricks and Griffin’s claims. On December 13, a more thorough search of Land’s vehicle recovered two additional .45 caliber bullets. Griffin changed his story during questioning, admitting to driving during the incident and firing a warning shot with his 9mm handgun.

Ricks was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, with bond set at $50,000. Griffin faces charges of accident involving damage to a vehicle and unlawfully carrying a weapon, posting a $7,000 bond and released on December 28. The investigation is ongoing.