A man faces a felony charge of stealing a catalytic converter after an incident at Cabool on Dec. 15, 2021.

Travis Smith, 28, of Mountain Grove, is charged with resisting arrest by fleeing – creating a substantial risk of serious injury or death to any person (a class E felony).

An officer wrote in a report that he was dispatched to the commuter parking lot at U.S. 63 and Ozark Street regarding a report of someone cutting a catalytic converter off of a vehicle.

Upon arrival, the officer made contact with a man who owned the damaged car, and the man said he had noticed a white Suburban near his vehicle. As the officer and the victim went to look at the Suburban, they reportedly made contact with another man, Smith, who claimed to have no knowledge of the situation.

The officer observed a scissor jack and tool boxes in the back seat of the Suburban, and noticed that Smith’s clothing was wet and muddy, as if he had been lying on the ground.

When Smith asked the officer what he was doing, the officer said he was investigating a case. But before he could tell Smith to stay put, he left quickly in the Suburban, according to the report.

The officer pursued in his patrol vehicle and reported reaching speeds of about 75 miles per hour. While traveling on Beeler Road, the officer lost control of his patrol vehicle on loose gravel and it slid off the road and crashed into an embankment.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol was contacted and eventually took Smith into custody. The officer’s patrol vehicle was towed from the crash scene.

Smith was charged March 31 and has a bond set at $250,000.

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