Driver in March car chase gets probation

Tuesday, October 23, 2012 | 2:35 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Jeffrey Edward Skaggs, 27, of Harrisburg, was sentenced to five years supervised probation on Monday stemming from a March incident in which Skaggs and a passenger, David McKenzie, 50, were involved in a car chase with Columbia Police.

Skaggs pleaded guilty in August to felony drug charges, which carry a maximum penalty of nine years in prison. He also pleaded guilty to theft, driving under the influence and resisting a lawful stop after police attempted to investigate the truck he was in. The truck had its headlights off and was stopped in a field off Rock Quarry Road. When the police approached, Skaggs and McKenzie took off. After a brief chase, police discovered stolen lumber and drug paraphernalia in the vehicle.

Judge Jodie Asel applied a suspended sentence of five years probation instead of the prosecuting attorney's recommended nine years for the drug charge and three for failure to stop. She also ruled that Skaggs, who was already on probation and parole at the time of his arrest, will need to abstain from alcohol, earn his GED diploma within two years and complete a mandatory mental health treatment program.

Supervising editor is Emilie Stigliani.

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