Troopers: Driver Tries To Run From Deadly Wreck

Right now the suspect at the center of an early morning manhunt is behind bars. DPS Troopers said Lawrence Villalobos, 29, was involved in a deadly crash around 2:15 this morning.

According to Trooper Tony Fulton, with the Department of Public Safety, Villalobos' "Pontiac was traveling at a high rate of speed and ran into the back of the pick-up truck. When it struck the back of the pick-up truck, it caused both vehicles to roll."

The accident occurred 3 miles east of Oklaunion near mile marker 304. The driver of the truck, Jason Franklin, 36, was not wearing his seat belt. He was partially ejected from his truck and died from his injuries. Franklin was from Linden, TX.

Troopers said Villalobos, of Vernon, tried getting a ride from witnesses at the scene, then left on foot when they refused.

Troopers set up road blocks, brought in a helicopter from Amarillo and used search dogs from Allred Prison to find the suspect. He was caught near the Oklaunion power plant a little before 8:15 a.m.

According to Trooper Fulton, Villalobos was drinking with friends before he got behind the wheel to drive.

"He was in Wichita Falls," said Trooper Fulton, "apparently he and some friends had been drinking throughout the night and he left 2 of his friends in Wichita Falls."

Trooper Fulton says this accident points out two very important things: don't drink and drive -- and always wear your seatbelt.

Troopers say Villalobos is facing charges of Intoxication Manslughter, Failing to Stop and Render Aid, and Fleeing.

Mary Moloney, Newschannel 6