Sex offender captured in Hughes Springs


DAINGERFIELD, TX (KLTV) - A set of strange circumstances lead to the capture of a wanted sex offender.

Michael Keith Lee, 55, a registered sex offender, had been sought by East Texas authorities for standard registration as required by law. Lee had given police the slip several times, but made one mistake that ended his time on the run.

He had eluded police in the Hughes Springs area for quite some time.

"He's required to register annually for life. I saw him at his residence. He was at home and now would be a good time to come get him," says Hughes Springs police chief Randy Kennedy.

Though he had been warned to turn himself in, he gave police an unusual reason why he didn't have to.

"He claims to be a sovereign citizen," Kennedy says.

Lee claimed he was not bound by U.S. law. But Lee had a curious way of making money that often put him in public view.

"He details cars, he mows yards to make money to make a dollar," the police chief says.

Once spotted, he would always vanish before police arrived. But investigators say Lee definitely pressed his luck once too often. You might say he mowed one too many lawns.

He was mowing a yard right next door to where the Daingerfield police chief lived. And then decided to mow the next yard for good measure.

"The Daingerfield police chief over there said he didn't want Lee mowing his yard, and told him he needed to leave. And Michael got in his truck and left," Kennedy said.

But Lee left his trailer and mowing equipment, and that was his undoing.

"He said 'you're not going to believe this, but I came home and he's mowing my yard.' Sure enough, 20 minutes later he showed up and that's when the chief got him," Randy says. 

Michael Lee remains in the Cass County Jail.

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