Narcotics Arrest 02/11/2016

For Immediate Release:

On Thursday February 11, 2016, around 11:30AM, Orange County Sheriff’s Office Deputies observed a white Volvo Tractor Trailer truck travelling eastbound failing to drive in a single lane. Deputies initiated a traffic stop on eastbound Interstate 10 near the 861 mile marker.

During the traffic stop, consent to search the vehicle was given and during the search of the vehicle, Deputy’s located 60 bundles of white powder believed to be cocaine. The bundles tested positive for Cocaine and were determined to weigh about 132 pounds with an approximate street value of 4.8 million dollars.

The driver of the vehicle was identified as MAURO CANO MORENO, H/M Age 30 of Alamo, TX.  MORENO was arrested for Possession of a Controlled Substance (Felony 1st Degree.)  Moreno was transported to the Orange County Correctional Facility and bond was set at $200,000.

Sheriff Merritt and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office will continue to diligently combat the drug activities that occur in the neighborhoods and other areas of Orange County. If you have any information about criminal activities please contact the Sheriff’s Office at 883-2612.

Detective Chad Hogan
Public Information Officer

Cocaine Bundles1


Posted in News Release

Certificates of Commendation Given to OCSO Deputies 02/08/2016

Captain Thomas Ray and Sergeant Joey Jacobs of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office were presented with Certificates of Commendation from Larry Sanders, Resident Agent in Charge of the Beaumont ATF Field Office today at the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. Agent Sanders advised the Certificates of Commendation were issued by the United States Department of Justice Organized Crime and Gang Section in conjunction with the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, for their involvement in a six-year investigative effort by a multi-agency task force,  into the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas (ABT) which has led to the conviction of 73 ABT members and associates including 36 high ranking leaders of the ABT, in cases prosecuted in the Southern District of Texas, Eastern District of Texas, Western District of Texas, Northern District of Texas and Western District of Oklahoma.

According to court records, the ABT is a highly structured organization run by five generals, each of whom oversees one of five geographic regions of Texas and sits on a steering committee. Each general supervises two chains of command —one on the “inside” and one on the “outside” of prison. Reporting to each general is an “inside major” and an “outside major” and each major oversees several captains, lieutenants and sergeants-at-arms and numerous soldiers. The ABT enforced its rules and promotes discipline among its members, prospects and associates through murder, attempted murder, Kidnapping, arson, aggravated assault, robbery and threats against those who violated ABT rules or posed a threat to the enterprise.

This Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force case is being investigated by a multi-agency task force consisting of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the Drug Enforcement Administration; FBI; U.S. Marshals Service; Federal Bureau of Prisons; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations; Texas Rangers; Texas Department of Public Safety; Montgomery County, Texas, Sheriff’s Office; Houston Police Department-Gang Division; Texas Department of Criminal Justice – Office of Inspector General; Harris County, Texas, Sheriff’s Office; Atascosa County, Texas, Sheriff’s Office; Orange County, Texas, Sheriff’s Office; Waller County, Texas, Sheriff’s Office; Alvin, Texas, Police Department; Carrollton, Texas, Police Department; Mesquite, Texas, Police Department; Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office; and the Atascosa County District Attorney’s Office.

The case was prosecuted by David Karpel of the Department of Justice Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section and Ed Gallagher and Tim Braley of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas. Sheriff Merritt said that he was honored to have two investigators from his office recognized by the Department of Justice and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and explosives. Sheriff Merritt also noted that while this case was a big blow to the command structure of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas he understands that someone is always willing to take the place of those sent to prison. He advised his agency will always make a diligent effort to combat any criminal activity in an effort to make Orange County a safe place to live, work, and raise a family.



Tom Ray Certificate

Joey Certificate



Posted in News Release

Narcotics/ Weapons Arrest 02012016

  For Immediate Release:

On Friday, January 29th at approximately 3:30PM, a team of narcotics investigators from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office Special Services Division and the City of Orange Narcotics Division executed a search warrant issued by District Judge Arkeen, at a residence located at 3575 East Rail Road, Vidor, Orange County, Texas.

During a search of the residence Investigators located approximately 82 Grams of methamphetamine, numerous items of methamphetamine paraphernalia to include scales, pipes and syringes.

During the search warrant, Scott E. McCrandall, white male, date of birth: 03/05/1979 was arrested for possession of a controlled substance a second degree felony.   In addition Investigators also seized seven firearms from McCrandall who is a three time convicted felon.

This search warrant was in response to numerous citizen complaints of suspicious activity and a month long investigation by the above agencies along with Investigators with the City of Sulpher Police Department.

McCrandall is currently being held in the Orange County Correctional Facility, charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance (a 2nd degree Felony) and Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Felon (a 3rd degree felony). His bond has been set at $30,000.00 for both offenses.  McCrandall is also being held on a Parole Violation with no bond set at this time.

Sheriff Merritt and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office will continue to diligently combat the drug activities that occur in the neighborhoods and other areas of Orange County.  If you any information about any criminal activity, please contact the Sheriff’s Office at 409-883-2612.

Detective Janois Strause





Posted in News Release

Death Investigation 12/07/2015

For Immediate Release:

On Saturday, December 05, 2015, at approximately 5:15 AM the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received a call concerning a motor vehicle crash in the westbound lane on the Neches River Bridge on IH-10 in Orange County.

Upon investigation it was determined that a green Geo Metro had stalled on the bridge in the outside lane of travel. A blue Toyota Van was traveling west bound and slowed to avoid striking the Geo Metro.  The Toyota Van was stopped behind the Geo Metro to avoid a collision at which time a white Chevrolet struck the Toyota from the rear causing a crash.

Both occupants in the Toyota van decided to exit the vehicle as they did not feel it was safe staying in the vehicle as they believed their vehicle was going to be struck again due to the traffic conditions. The passenger of the Toyota Van climbed out of the vehicle and climbed over the bridge railing and jumped to the adjacent bridge structure which was only a few feet away.  The driver of the Chevrolet jumped over the railing to the adjacent bridge as well for safety.  The driver of the Toyota Van attempted to jump over the gap in the bridges but was not successful and fell forty to fifty feet onto the ground below.

Beaumont Fire Department and Beaumont EMS responded to the scene. The Toyota driver,   Pierre Moise Patin, W/M, a 52 year old Lake Charles, LA resident succumbed to his injuries from the fall.  Orange County Justice of the Peace David Peck was contacted and pronounced Mr. Patin deceased at the scene.

Shavers Transport Company responded to the scene and transported the victim to Vidor Memorial Funeral Home until funeral arrangements can be made.

Detective Chad Hogan

Posted in News Release

Narcotics Arrest 11/17/2015

For Immediate Release: 

On Monday, November 16, 2015, around 7:30 p.m., Orange County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Detectives, along with assistance from City of Orange Police Department Narcotics Detectives, were working in an area along Interstate 10 East bound near Vidor, Orange County, Texas.

Detectives observed a black Dodge Charger with a Louisiana license plate commit a series of traffic violations.  Detectives conducted a traffic stop of the vehicle near IH-10 and FM 105.  As the Detectives approached the vehicle, they observed the female driver attempting to hide a package that they believed contained illegal drugs.  The female admitted to possessing the illegal drugs and was arrested.  The total amount of drugs found was approximately 9.6 ounces of what was believed to be methamphetamine.

The white female driver was identified as 34 year old Lauren Courmier of Vinton, Louisiana.  She was transported to the Orange County Correctional Facility where she was booked for Possession of a Controlled Substance, a 1st Degree Felony.

On Tuesday morning, November 17, 2015, Courmier was arraigned by District Judge Courtney Arkeen and the bond was set at $300,000.  Courmier remains in custody at the Orange County Jail.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office was assisted in the investigation of this narcotics incident by the City of Orange Police Department and the City of Sulphur Police Department.  Orange County Sheriff Keith Merritt said he will continue to utilize all of his available resources, including the assistance of other law enforcement agencies, to help rid Orange County of illegal drugs.

Courmier, Lauren

Posted in News Release

Shooting Investigation 10/29/2015

UPDATE: 10-30-2015 @ 7:30 a.m.

Investigators worked all night into the morning hours gathering evidence and questioning all persons involved.  The 48 year old man who was found deceased from apparent gunshot wounds was identified as Steven Coutee of Vidor.  The person responsible for shooting Coutee has cooperated with the investigation.  No charges or arrests have been made at this time.

The investigation is still ongoing and more information will be released as it becomes available.

On Thursday, October 29, 2015, around 9:10 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office responded to a residence in the 400 block of Florence St., in Orange County, just outside the city limits of Vidor, Texas, in reference to a possible shooting.

Deputies arrived on scene and found one 48 year old man from Vidor deceased from apparent gunshot wounds.  The person believed to be responsible for shooting the man was on scene and cooperated with the Deputies.  He is cooperating with Investigators as they are gathering statements.  It has not yet been determined if the man will be arrested and charged at this time.  Investigators remain on scene collecting evidence and trying to determine what led to the shooting.  The Justice of the Peace Judge Price was notified and arrived on scene during the investigation.  An autopsy will follow once the body is transferred to the Jefferson County Morgue.

The investigation into the shooting is ongoing and more details will be released when available.

Posted in News Release

Animal Attack 10/18/2015

For Immediate Release:

UPDATE: 10-19-2015 @ 4:30 p.m.

The breed of the dogs involved in the attack was Pit bull dogs.  The actual cause of death for Tanner Smith has not been determined as the autopsy is scheduled for tomorrow morning, Tuesday, October 20, 2015.  While it remains an open and active case until all results and facts are reviewed, it does not appear there will be any criminal charges.  The dogs were in their fenced in domain where the attack occurred.


On Sunday, October 18, 2015, around 7:00 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office received an emergency call in reference to a 5 year old male who was severely injured by two dogs at a residence in the 1700 block of Aloha St., Vidor, Orange County, Texas.

Deputies and EMS arrived on scene and began life saving measures on the five year old.  The boy was transported to a hospital in Beaumont and was later pronounced deceased after succumbing to his injuries.  While on scene, Deputies learned that the mother of the boy was visiting a friend at the residence and believed that her son was with the friend’s husband outside.  Once she realized the dog’s owner  was not at the residence, she went outside and found her son injured by the two dogs.  When the owner of the dogs was notified of what happened, he quickly returned to the residence and ultimately put both dogs down.

The five year old has been identified as Tanner Smith of Vidor.  The investigation is ongoing.

Posted in News Release

Runaway 09/29/2015

For Immediate Release:

On Wednesday, September 23, 2015, a juvenile was reported missing to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. The juvenile was last seen at the Little Cypress-Mauriceville High School and left the campus without permission on that date around noon. The juvenile has been reported as a runaway in the past, but was located after a period of time. The juvenile is believed to be in the Orange area; however, she has been located further than Orange County in the past.

The juvenile is 16 year old white female Katelyn Elizabeth Pass (DOB 7-21-99) of Orange, Texas. She has brown hair, blue eyes, weighs about 106 lbs., and is 5’4” tall. She was last seen wearing burgundy colored denim leggings, a black t-shirt, and a white backpack with unicorns on it.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office is asking for assistance in locating Katelyn. If anyone has seen or has any information on her whereabouts, please contact the Orange County Sheriff’s Office at (409) 883-2612.

runaway 2 Runaway

Posted in News Release

Drowning 08/16/2015

For Immediate Release:

UPDATE: 8-17-2015 @ 2:20 p.m.

The name of the 14 year old male juvenile is Joshua Murray.


On Sunday, August 16, 2015, around 2:55 p.m., the Orange County Sheriff’s Office responded to Boomtown at 1495 W. Freeway, Rose City, Orange County, Texas, in reference to a possible drowning.

When Deputies arrived, they learned that several juvenile boys were swimming in the lake and one of the boys began to struggle in the water. Two boys noticed he was struggling and tried to reach him to pull him up. They were unable to grab him before he went under and he never resurfaced. They were in water over their heads and they could not find him.

Divers with the Beaumont Fire Department arrived on scene to assist with the search and were able to locate the body of the juvenile. The Justice of the Peace Judge Dunn ordered an autopsy and the body was transported to the Jefferson County Morgue.

Posted in News Release

Death Investigation 07/22/2015

For Immediate Release: 

UPDATE: 7-22-2015 @ 4:15 p.m.

The identity of the man who was shot in the leg is 37 year old Daryl King of Orange, Texas. The gunshot caused extensive damage to King’s leg. King eventually succumbed to the injury and died. The autopsy is scheduled on Thursday morning, July 23, 2015.

Detectives are still following up on information that led to the shooting and more details will be released as it becomes available. At this time, no charges have been filed on the man who shot King.


On Wednesday, July 22, 2015, around 6:10 a.m., Deputies with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 9-1-1 call in the 5200 block of Avenue A, Orange, Orange County, Texas, in reference to a man who was shot at a residence.

When Deputies arrived on scene, they located an injured man who appeared to have been suffering from a single gunshot wound to the leg. The man was transported by ambulance to a hospital in Beaumont, Texas. The person responsible for shooting the man is cooperating with the investigation. Detectives are still gathering witness statements and evidence to determine what occurred that led to the man being shot.

The investigation into the shooting is ongoing and more details will be released when available.

Posted in News Release


Emergency: 911

Non-Emergency: (409) 883-2612

Orange Office

205 S. Border

Mauriceville Substation

11867 Highway 62 North

(409) 882-7913

Vidor Substation

375 Claiborne Street

(409) 769-6391

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