What started as a traffic stop for no license plate in Wheeling, ended up with a high-speed chase, at times over 100 miles per hour and the driver driving westbound in the eastbound lanes of US 36. Sheriff Steve Cox says the incident began about 4:15 pm Tuesday. Sheriff Cox attempted to stop the vehicle that took off, eventually going East in the eastbound lanes of US 36. At Route EE, the suspect slammed on his brakes, backed up and then turned around and was heading west in the eastbound lanes.
The Sheriff and Highway Patrol continued to chase in the westbound lanes. At Wheeling, the suspect turned north and went through Wheeling. Near LIV 216, he went through a crop field and was able to get around the Sheriff and Highway Patrol on LIV 273. A short time later the vehicle gave out and 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 man saw the dog and gave up after exiting the vehicle.
Zaki checked the vehicle, showing signs of drugs. The officers found alleged methamphetamine and marijuana drug paraphernalia. They arrested 34-year-old Nathaniel Watkins of Kansas City. He faces a laundry list of charges. Sheriff Cox says from the first attempt to stop the man to his arrest was about 8 minutes.