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One drowned, 3 facing charges after robbery led to vehicle chase and crash

Published: Mar. 9, 2020 at 6:29 PM CDT
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MARSTON, Mo. (KFVS) - One person died and three people are in custody after a robbery led to vehicle chase in multiple southeast Missouri Counties, and ended in a crash.

Tremayne Alford, Cordell Smith and Zackier Kelley were each charged with first-degree robbery, armed criminal action, resisting/interfering with arrest for a felony.

They appeared in court on Monday, March 9 and each pleaded not guilty. Their bond hearings are scheduled for March 19.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol Trooper Clark Parrott, multiple authorities were called out to the Pilot Travel Center in Marston, around 11:25 p.m. on March 6.

Parrott said four people entered the truck stop, and two of them were armed.

The suspects then left the business and headed northbound.

Authorities attempted to stop the suspect vehicle on U.S. 61 around 12:10 a.m. on March 7.

They chased the vehicle to the intersection of Highway K and Highway A near Wardell, Mo. where the driver crashed, around 12:30 a.m.

Authorities were able to arrest two people at the scene of the crash.

Parrott said the other two tried to get away by jumping into a nearby pond.

One of the suspects resurfaced and police were able to apprehend them.

The fourth suspect, identified as Kirk King, 20, of Olive Branch, Ms., did not resurface and drowned in the pond.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol was able to retrieve King’s body around 5 a.m. on March 7.

Parrott said at least four agencies worked together over the course of the evening.

“There were a lot of moving parts with it, you’ve got a strong-armed robbery, you’ve got the pursuit, you’ve got a crash, you’ve got a drowning, you’ve got a search and rescue and then a recovery of that body," Parrott said. "... This is a good example of law enforcement coming together and working together for a resolution.”

Parrott said in his time as an officer he’s dealt with a lot of suspects who run from the police, but nothing like this.

“Pursuits are not that uncommon, but for subjects to jump into a pond to try to evade, you know, for us it’s pretty easy. We just wait until they come out on the other side of the pond or whatever. If we can do that, but sadly one of the individuals did drown,” Parrott said.

The investigation is continuing.

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