Convicted killer arrested after high-speed chase

Thursday, February 7, 2008 | 7:38 p.m. CST; updated 3:39 p.m. CDT, Friday, July 18, 2008

COLUMBIA — A high speed pursuit that covered more than 40 miles and two counties ended early Thursday morning with the arrest of a fugitive with a violent past.

The Kansas City field office of the FBI notified the Columbia Police Department that Robert E. Williams, 33, had violated his parole stemming from a second-degree murder conviction and was possibly hiding in Columbia, police Lt. Scott Young said.

A warrant was issued Dec. 14 for the arrest of Williams, said Brian Hauswirth a spokesperson for the Department of Corrections. In 1991, Williams, whose nicknames are “Peanut” and “Triggerman,” was sentenced to 25 years for second degree murder, according to the Department of Corrections. He was paroled in 2005.

Columbia police found Williams early Thursday morning at 3563 Scott Blvd. The chase began when Williams fled at 12:39 a.m. in a rented Dodge Charger with Kansas license plates, police said.

Officers deployed a spike-strip near the intersection of Broadway and Dundee Drive, and it flattened Williams’ right front tire. He continued driving east on Broadway, then north on Highway 63.

Boone County Sheriff’s deputies assisted Columbia police by deploying a second spike-strip near Highway 63 and Oakland Gravel Road which flattened Williams other front tire, said Boone County Sheriff’s Department Maj. Tom Reddin. Williams was able to maintain control of the vehicle as speeds reached 80 miles per hour.

“(Williams) ran on rims,” Reddin said.

Russell Tarr, assistant chief at the Moberly Police Department, said Williams drove north out of Boone County towards Moberly until his car stopped near the Moberly Regional Medical Center. After a brief foot pursuit Williams was arrested at 1:16 a.m.

Authorities found a bottle they believe contains PCP inside Williams’ vehicle.

Hauswirth said it is likely Williams probation will be revoked, which would mean Williams would serve prison time until at least 2016. He was arrested on additional charges of driving with a suspended license, second-degree trafficking of a controlled substance, resisting arrest and careless driving. He was being held Thursday without bail at the Boone County Jail.

“This man needed to be taken off the streets,” Hauswirth said. “This takes hard work and good intelligence.”

Tarr said that Moberly police, Missouri State Highway Patrol and Randolph County deputies all assisted Columbia police in making the arrest.

The Columbia Police Department’s policy on motor vehicle pursuits states that if a suspect has committed a serious felony, pursuit is justified.

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