By Nancy Drury-Duncan –
Keshaun Lamar Coston, 31, of Painter, initially scheduled for a bench trial last week, entered into a plea agreement with the commonwealth. Coston pleaded guilty to five felonies, which include two counts of eluding, damage to a church cemetery, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of methamphetamine. Several other charges were not prosecuted according to the terms of the agreement. He will be sentenced to five years on each with all suspended but three years of active prison time.
On June 2, 2020, a deputy recognized Coston’s green Mercury as the one described as being involved in an earlier brandishing of a firearm. The deputy followed the car for a time and soon instituted a traffic stop. Coston did not stop and a chase ensued, reaching speeds of up to 100 mph, said Commonwealth’s Attorney Spencer Morgan. He said Coston finally ran up into the cemetery of Zion Baptist church in Painter, damaging several headstones. Coston fled on foot.
Police found a pistol, a credit card, and a driver’s license belonging to Coston in the car. A K-9 search did not locate Coston but found a bag containing white tablets later found to belong to Coston. The tablets were methamphetamine.
“Coston eluded detection for some time,” said Morgan.
Nearly a year later, on May 10, 2021, police spotted Coston as the driver of a car in Onley and attempted a traffic stop. He did not stop right away, Morgan told the court. Another officer pulled in front of Coston’s car and he stopped but then backed away and fled at a high rate of speed. Morgan said Coston crashed his car and ran across U.S. Route 13 and into the woods by the Bojangles restaurant where he was apprehended and arrested.
Morgan said the defendant wanted four jury trials for the two separate incidents and Morgan believed the plea agreement was an appropriate disposition of the case. Judge W. Revell Lewis III ordered that a presentence investigation report be prepared. He set Coston’s sentencing for Aug. 11.