Brazos Valley deputy survives fiery crash during pursuit

Credit Grimes County Sheriff's Office

GRIMES COUNTY, Texas (KBTX) The following news release comes from Grimes County Sheriff Don Sowell:

On the date of Monday, January 28th 2019 at 6:45 PM, Grimes County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to a residence in 7500 Block of CR. 232 within the Shiro Community of Grimes County, Texas.

Deputies were dispatched to the above residence in regards to an individual had arrived at the residence and began making threats towards his estranged wife and after a few moments left the residence on a Yamaha Motorcycle.

While enroute, A Sheriff’s Deputy spotted the motorcycle on State Highway 30 near Tenaska west of Shiro and proceeded to turn around to purse the motorcycle, at that time the driver of the motorcycle proceeded to accelerate away from him rapidly.

The Deputy then observed the motorcycle turn onto FM 2562 and attempted to stop the vehicle by means of activating his overhead lights and sirens signaling for the driver to stop and as a result the driver proceeded to flee.

This pursuit continued throughout many Farm Market Roads and State Highways in northern Grimes County which at many points the driver proceeded to disregard the safety for himself and others by driving erratically at speeds exceeding 130 MPH.

During this time, the weather became inclimate and began to rain heavily causing the roads to become slick. The Deputy lost control of his vehicle as a result of hydroplaning and going off of the roadway, going airborne, overturning multiple times, striking a tree and then catching fire. The Deputy was able to climb out of the vehicle and get to safety.

The motorcycle was located approximately one mile north of the accident scene of the Sheriff’s Deputy by DPS Troopers and subsequently the driver was taken into custody.

Steven Benefield, 34 of Shiro was later booked into the Grimes County Jail and was charged with the offense of Evading Arrest w/ Vehicle causing Serious Bodily Injury a 3rd Degree Felony punishable by 2 to 20 years confinement in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and a fine not to exceed $10,000. Benefield remains incarcerated in the Grimes County Jail with bond set at $50,000.

As a result of this incident, Sheriff’s Deputy Reed Edelman sustained injuries to include but are not limited to fractures of the vertebrae. Deputy Edelman was released early on this date from the Scott & White Hospital in College Station and is recovering at home.