COLUMBUS — Despite the fact police were there for somebody else, a Pittsburg man gave them a fake name and then led them on a chase across state lines Thursday.
Of course the suspect had warrants of his own as well.
According to a release from the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Department, at 10 a.m. Thursday, a CKSO deputy went to a rural Weir home in search of a man with outstanding warrants for his arrest. Although the man being sought was not located there, another man who was present gave the deputy a fictitious name.
As the deputy was running the name through NCIC, the man got into a 2016 Dodge Charger, attempted to hit the deputy and fled the scene.
The suspect, 45 year-old William Ray Clinton, of Pittsburg, allegedly led law enforcement on a short pursuit and was captured a few miles into Missouri. Clinton had outstanding arrest warrants from Crawford County for distribution of meth, possession of meth, possession of drug paraphernalia and fleeing law enforcement in addition to warrants out of Missouri.
Following the pursuit, Clinton was transported by the Jasper County, Missouri, Sheriff’s Office to the Jasper County Jail.
In addition to the outstanding warrants, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office will be seeking charges of aggravated assault on law enforcement, interference with law enforcement, reckless driving, fleeing law enforcement and driving while revoked.
“This situation was bizarre in the sense the suspect, knowing he had outstanding arrest warrants, gave the deputy a fictitious name,” Cherokee County Sheriff David Groves said. “Unfortunately for him, the name he initially gave, was of a person who also had felony warrants and had been tagged as a potentially dangerous felon.
“I’m grateful this suspect, who posed a risk to our community and was wanted by other law enforcement jurisdictions in Kansas and Missouri, was safely apprehended.”
Clinton had been arrested in late January of 2017 for similar charges when he lead the Pittsburg Police Department on a short chase after officers attempted to stop him for an illegal tag.
The vehicle failed to stop and led officers on a short pursuit. Clinton allegedly struck a fence owned by Kansas City Southern Railroad at 11th and Michigan streets. Clinton allegedly continued to 7th and Michigan streets, where he stopped and Clinton was taken into custody.
Officers searched the pursuit route and were able to locate a “significant amount” of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia, which was allegedly discarded by Clinton during the pursuit. Clinton was arrested at the time on charges of possession of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute within 1,000 feet of a school, possession of methamphetamine, felony possession of drug paraphernalia, fleeing and eluding, driving while being a habitual violator, driving while suspended and illegal registration.
Clinton, who is currently on Parole has an extensive criminal record, with convictions dating from 1991 for such varied offenses as burglary, drug possession battery of a law enforcement officer and criminal threat.
Clinton is currently being held in the Jasper County Jail while awaiting extradition.
— Patrick Richardson is the managing editor of the Pittsburg Morning Sun. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter @PittEditor.