A Salem man wanted in three area counties is charged with two felonies after an incident Nov. 17 in which he is accused of trying to hit a Texas County Sheriff’s Department deputy with a truck.

As a result of the incident, Justin P. Giller, 26, of 4135 Highway VV at Salem, is charged with first-degree assault – serious physical injury or special victim and armed criminal action.

According to a report, two deputies were dispatched regarding a report of a suspicious vehicle on Kinderpost Road. After locating the vehicle on Mitchell Drive, an officer identified the driver as Giller.

After the officer made contact with him, Giller fled in a white Dodge pickup. While fleeing, Giller reportedly swerved the truck toward the other deputy, who had parked behind the first officer and was walking toward the forward vehicle.

Giller reportedly came within inches of striking the officer and pinning him between his truck and a patrol vehicle.

One of the officers pursued Giller, but lost sight of him on Highway K in Phelps County.

The seriousness of the incident is detailed in a Dec. 8 report.

Also wanted in Phelps and Dent counties, Giller was arrested Wednesday in St. Louis County and jailed in Phelps County with a $250,000 bond. He faces four felony charges in Phelps County (including resisting arrest, unlawful possession of a firearm, possession of burglary tools and stealing $750 or more) and a felony charge Dent County of second-degree burglary. 

Giller’s criminal history indicates previous convictions for burglary, resisting arrest and robbery. While searching for him Nov. 29, Dent County officers found a rifle in his abandoned pickup, and as a convicted felon, Giller cannot lawfully possess a firearm.

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