Trial continues for Tyler man accused of shooting at a Smith County Sheriff's Office deputy in March 2016

Published on Wednesday, 10 January 2018 11:21 - Written by By LouAnna Campbell, lcampbell@tylerpaper.com

The trial for a man accused of shooting a Smith County deputy in March 2016 continues Wednesday. 

Ricardo Pineda, 33, is accused of shooting the deputy while riding in the passenger seat of a car that was fleeing law enforcement. He is standing trial in the 241st District Court for aggravated assault against a peace officer, a first-degree felony and, if found guilty, could be sentenced to life in prison.  

On Tuesday, a Smith County jury watched dashcam footage of the pursuit and shooting on a monitor. The jurors saw the flashing lights, heard the sirens, heard the radio communications between the deputy and a dispatcher as a patrol vehicle chased a Nissan Altima on March 21, 2016, on a rural Smith County road.

"Shots fired," the deputy was heard saying in the video. 

The video showed muzzle flashes from automatic rifles being fired from the windows of the vehicle fleeing the deputy. Bullets were seen ricocheting off the roadway as the black car in the video flees the deputy. A bullet hit the patrol vehicle causing the deputy to disengage from the pursuit and pull over on the side of the road.  

On Tuesday, Jeremy Robinson, a co-defendant in the case, told the court he was driving the Nissan Altima shown in the dashcam footage. He said he reached speeds of 100 miles per hour while he drove away from law enforcement. Robinson continued his testimony Wednesday.

Prosecutors are working to describe the timeline and chain of events that led to Pineda's arrest in Arkansas two weeks after the incident. 

Pineda is being held in the Smith County Jail on bonds totaling $8 million. Robinson and another defendant face the same charges. Their trial dates have not yet been set. 

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