CARTHAGE — A rural Carthage man, wanted for failing to appear in court in Newton County on two counts of statutory sodomy, bolted from police custody at about 5 p.m. Friday and led officers on a three-hour search through the city.
Carthage Police Chief Greg Dagnan said Nathaniel Norris, 20, escaped from the Carthage police station, 310 E. Fourth St., at around 5 p.m. Friday.
Norris was recaptured shortly before 9 p.m. on Friday after dashing into a home at 1105 Baker Blvd., and hiding in the attic and faces charges of escaping from custody as well as tampering with a motor vehicle. Bond was set at $15,000 cash only.
Dagnan said Cassandra Davis, 34, Carthage, was charged with aiding and abetting the escape of a felon and was being held on $500 bond for allegedly helping Norris escape.
Dagnan said Norris was in custody on suspicion of stealing a motorcycle from the Breckenwood neighborhood of west Carthage, hence the charge of tampering with a motor vehicle.
Police also arrested Brian Jones, 28, Sarcoxie, for his involvement in the theft of a pickup truck from the same neighborhood at the same time.
Jones has been charged with tampering with a motor vehicle and is being held on $10,000 surety bond and $1,000 cash bond.
Dagnan said police are still investigating, but they believe the two thefts and the two suspects are connected.
Dagnan said at around 5 p.m., Norris escaped out the south door of the station while a police officer was trying to help him bandage a wound on his arm.
Carthage police, Jasper County Sheriff's Deputies and troopers with the Missouri State Highway Patrol formed a “case squad,” according to Dagnan, and started searching for Norris.
“I was very impressed with the cooperation between the departments,” Dagnan said. “Everyone came together and we had Norris back in custody very quickly.”
Dagnan said officers tracked Norris to 1105 Baker St., where he was taken into custody shortly after 8 p.m. Norris was found hiding in the attic at the home.
Dagnan said Norris does not live at that address, but someone associated with Norris does.
Court records online show that Norris was wanted in Newton County for failure to appear at a court hearing on June 17.
He had been arraigned on two counts of statutory sodomy for allegedly having deviate sexual intercourse with someone under 14 in August 2012 and pleaded not guilty.
A jury trial on those charges had been set for Sept. 18 and a pretrial hearing had been slated for June 17, but Norris didn’t appear. Newton County Judge Tim Perigo had issued a warrant for Norris’ arrest and set bond at $20,000.
Court records also show that Norris failed to appear for a court hearing in Jasper County on June 11 regarding the completion of the terms of a probation sentence stemming from a charge of misdemeanor DWI dating from August 2011.
Page 2 of 2 - An arrest warrant was issued in Jasper County with a bond of $15,000 surety and $299.50 cash.