Local man arrested for drugs, warrant, interfering with police

Staff Reports / news@morningsun.net

PITTSBURG, Kan. — A Pittsburg man was arrested on multiple charges Tuesday evening after he allegedly resisted arrest for a warrant for probation violations stemming from an arrest last week. 

Around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, a Pittsburg police officer on routine patrol in the area of the 1800 block of North Joplin Street observed what appeared to be an argument between a male and a female subject at a vehicle stopped in the westbound lane on 18th Street. Both subjects were allegedly yelling at each other. 

The officer turned around to investigate the incident further, according to a police press release, but the female subject got into the vehicle and left the area, heading westbound toward Elm Street, before the officer could get back to 18th Street. The officer then made contact with the male subject, who was walking westbound toward Elm Street, to follow up with him about the apparent argument. 

The officer recognized the subject as Kaleb F. Gudgen, 28, of Pittsburg, according to the release, and knew that Gudgen had an active warrant for his arrest through the Crawford County District Court for probation violations. 

Last Wednesday, March 10, Gudgen was arrested by the Crawford County Sheriff’s Office for charges including felon in possession of a firearm, transporting an open container of liquor, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was released the next day after posting a $5,000 bond. 

In 2014, Gudgen was sentenced to the Kansas Department of Corrections for an aggravated robbery incident that occurred in Pittsburg in July of that year. 

Following the initial contact with Gudgen Tuesday evening, another officer arrived to assist, and the female driver of the aforementioned vehicle also returned. The officers attempted to take Gudgen into custody for his arrest warrant, at which time Gudgen allegedly placed his left hand into his pants pocket. Officers then took hold of Gudgen and ordered him to remove his hand from his pocket, but he allegedly refused to comply. 

Gudgen’s other arm, which he said had been recently broken, was in a cast, according to police. The officers placed one end of a handcuff into the back of Gudgen’s pants belt loop and were finally able to remove Gudgen’s left hand from his pants pocket and secure it in the other handcuff. 

Gudgen was still allegedly clutching something in his left hand, however, and refused to release it. He was given numerous commands to open his hand, according to police, but remained noncompliant, “and then he pulled away from the officers and went down onto the ground.” 

As the cast on his right arm did not allow for the application of typical handcuff restraints, Gudgen had a freer range of movement with his left hand, which he kept concealing and moving toward the front of his body. 

He kept resisting police commands, “leading to one of the officers having to deploy his department issued Taser in the capacity of a drive stun device (no probes were deployed) to gain compliance,” according to the release. 

The application of the Taser was ineffective, however, and Gudgen allegedly continued resisting officers for several more minutes before they were finally able to gain control over him. 

Officers found that Gudgen had been clutching plastic baggies containing a white crystalline substance believed to be methamphetamine, according to the Pittsburg Police Department. 

Crawford County Emergency Medical Services were called to the scene and at the request of the officers Gudgen was transported to the hospital for evaluation. No injuries to Gudgen or the officers were discovered. 

Gudgen was later released from the hospital and transported to the Crawford County Jail for booking. He was arrested for felony possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, felony interference with law enforcement, misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia and the probation violation warrant. He is being held without bond. 

The investigation into this incident is ongoing at this time, the PPD noted in its release. Anyone with information related to this incident, or other crimes, is urged to contact the police department at 620-231-1700 or at the automated tip line, 620-231-TIPS (8477). Callers may remain anonymous.