VIDEO: Deputy Fired For Driving With Inmate On Roof Of Patrol Car

A Taylor County deputy was fired after he continued driving down a highway after an inmate escaped onto his roof.

Abilene, TX – A Taylor County deputy has been fired from his job for continuing to drive down a Texas highway with an inmate riding on the roof of his patrol vehicle (video below).

The incident began when Taylor County Sheriff’s Deputy Ricky Wombles was transporting 31-year-old-inmate Martin Estrada from Wichita Falls to the Taylor County Jail, Big Country Homepage reported.

Before leaving the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Wombles placed Estrada in handcuffs and leg irons with the assistance of three other staff members, according to a press release from the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputy Wombles was driving down Highway 277 in Archer County when Estrada "was able to free one wrist from his handcuffs and use it to shatter the rear passenger-side window of the patrol car," the press release said.

At that point, Estrada climbed out the window of the patrol car and onto the roof, as the deputy continued to drive down the highway, Big Country Homepage reported.

The inmate threatened to commit suicide if Deputy Wombles didn’t stop the police car. However, Deputy Wombles refused and continued driving until backup arrived from Wichita Falls, according to the press release from the sheriff’s department.

Witnesses said that Estrada rode down the highway on top of the police car for about five minutes, KTXS reported.

The video showed that when Wichita County sheriff’s deputies joined Deputy Wombles on the highway, he then pulled over with Estrada on the roof.

As soon the deputy slowed onto the shoulder of the road, Estrada appeared to be getting ready to jump and make a run for it.

Sure enough, the inmate jumped off, rolled, and bounced up in an effort to make a getaway the second the patrol car slowed down enough for him to escape safely, the video showed.

But a police SUV pulled up just in front of the patrol vehicle, and another pulled up closer to the inmate, alongside the vehicle he’d jumped from, and Estrada looked to be reconsidering his decision to flee.

In the video, Estrada turned and appeared to calmly wait for the deputies to come replace his handcuffs. But the minute a deputy actually approached him, the inmate began resisting, the video showed.

Two more deputies jumped into the fray, and Estrada was tased and re-handcuffed, and taken back into custody, the video showed.

The Taylor County Sheriff's Office told KTXS in a statement that Deputy Wombles had been terminated "for violating Taylor County Sheriff's Office policies concerning the safety and security of the inmate."

Wichita Falls deputies helped Deputy Wombles get Estrada safely to the Taylor County Jail after the near escape, and the inmate was held on bonds totaling nearly $1 million dollars for various warrants which included multiple charges for evading arrest, as well as robbery and drug offenses.

You can see video of the incident below:

Comments (22)
No. 1-12

Should have tied him to the bumper and dragged his butt to jail


When I read the headline my first thought was that the deputy was a dumb ass, but after reading the story I've reconsidered. If the deputy had stopped before backup arrived it could have been a very dicey situation for him. I'm not sure termination of employment was the right decision.


That was a tough call the deputy had to make. I don't believe for a second that deputy should have been fired. He shouldn't have even been disciplined. The inmate broke free of his restraints and acted a fool. You can't hold the deputy accountable for a criminals actions. The inmate was the one who was endangering the public safety. I regret that they decided to sacrifice the deputy in order to appease someone.


Need to put in a securing point in the vehicles like at the booking/processing desk. One for a hand and one for a foot in the cases where they have to hogtie someone.


If the deputy had stopped the car before back-up arrived, thus letting the suspect escape, he would've been fired for that. Definite "rock and hard place" scenario. Hopefully he gets hired by a department with better leadership!