On Tuesday, December 31, 2019 about 4:14 p.m. Sheriff Cox was in Wheeling and saw a vehicle with no license plates being driven by a white male. When the driver realized the sheriff was turning around the driver accelerated quickly and was then speeding and driving careless. The suspect vehicle was checked at 60 miles per hour when it was fast approaching U.S. 36 and appeared to brake but not slow much as it went through the intersection. A west bound vehicle was very close to striking the suspect vehicle as it went through the intersection at U.S. 36.
Suspect vehicle went east on U.S. 36 at over 100 miles per hour and continued into Linn County weaving through traffic. East of the area of Highway EE intersection the suspect slammed on his brakes and then began backing up very fast with the sheriff avoiding his vehicle as the suspect driver turned and began travelling west in the east bound lanes of U.S. 36. It was obvious this man was intent on driving dangerous.
Sheriff Cox continued updating dispatch and travelled west in the west bound lanes of U.S. 36 attempting to alert motorists. The suspect was again traveling over 100 miles per hour and continued in the wrong lanes to about 1 mile into Livingston County when the suspect slowed as the sheriff was ahead on the west bound lanes and crossed over in attempt to prevent the suspect vehicle from continuing further into oncoming east bound traffic. The suspect was able to get around but nearly striking the LCSO patrol vehicle and then crossed over to travel west in the west bound lanes of 36 while continuing driving dangerous.
Backup officers were near the Wheeling intersection and attempting to warn traffic when the suspect braked hard and turned north onto Highway B going through Wheeling. The vehicle had gained significant distance on the LCSO vehicle and continued north on Highway B at a high rate of speed, frequently driving in the wrong lane of the two lane highway. The suspect vehicle went onto a private crop field north of Highway B at LIV 216 and continued north in the private field at a high rate of speed and drove around a nearby home. The sheriff and Missouri State Highway Patrol were quick to get on LIV 273 and go north where the sheriff attempted to block the escape route for the driver on this private property but that vehicle ended up going around and through the private yard and went north on LIV 273 with the state trooper now following.
Further north on LIV 273 the suspect vehicle gave out and the car slowly came to rest. K-9 Zaki and Deputy Leadbetter were close behind the trooper and sheriff at this time and Zaki was ready for the driver to flee on foot. The male suspect did not clarify why he did not run after quickly exiting the car but we suspect he was aware K-9 Zaki was ready to meet him and the driver made the first right choice of the afternoon by not fighting or running further.
Prior to stopping the trooper reported seeing an occupant appear to throw at least one item from the vehicle (officers later recovered a meth pipe in that vicinity). Zaki showed positive indications on the odor of drug(s) in the vehicle and officers seized alleged methamphetamine and marijuana drug paraphernalia.
The driver was arrested and identified as Nathaniel Watkins, 34, Kansas City and was arrested for alleged felony Resisting Arrest-Serious Risk of Death of Injury, felony Tampering with Physical Evidence, Possession of the drug paraphernalia for meth and marijuana, suspected felony driving while revoked/suspended, failing to yield to emergency vehicle, careless and imprudent driving, stop sign violation, and possible other traffic offenses. Dispatch advised Mr. Watkins had an active felony arrest warrant for alleged Stealing from another county in Missouri and showed possible multiple other arrest warrants that were not extraditable from this area.
The passenger was identified as a 32-year-old female from Raytown, MO and was released after questioning pending case review by prosecuting attorney Adam Warren. This female reported being on felony probation in Linn County, MO for a drug crime. A report will be submitted to her probation officer.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol processed Mr. Watkins and the LCSO transferred him to the Daviess Dekalb Regional Jail.
This incident started approximately 4:14 p.m. the suspect was in custody at 4:22 p.m. Fortunately no one was injured during this incident.
Dispatchers did an amazing job of keeping everyone updated and getting the various officers in the right positions. Excellent job also by all including the MSHP, Linn County Sheriff's Office, Chillicothe Department of Emergency Services, and LCSO deputies including K-9 Zaki.
Note: All persons are innocent unless and until proven guilty in a Court of Law. An arrest is merely an allegation and nothing more.