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State v. Thomas

Court of Appeals of Missouri, Western District, Fourth Division

July 28, 2015

STATE OF MISSOURI, Respondent,
v.
TONYA MARIE THOMAS, Appellant

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri. The Honorable Joel P. Fahnestock, Judge.

Mary H. Moore, Jefferson City, MO, for respondent.

Rosemary E. Percival, Kansas City, MO, for appellant.

Before Division Four: Alok Ahuja, Chief Judge, Presiding, Karen King Mitchell, Judge and Gary D. Witt, Judge. All concur.

OPINION

Page 45

Gary D. Witt, Judge

Appellant Tonya Thomas (" Thomas" ) appeals from her conviction of the class D felony of resisting arrest, contesting the sufficiency of the evidence in her sole point on appeal. Because we find that sufficient evidence supports the jury's finding of guilt, we affirm.

Factual and Procedural History[1]

Thomas was convicted by a jury of the class D felony of resisting arrest, Section 575.150.[2] The following evidence was presented at trial:

Page 46

Kansas City Police Officer Zachary True (" Officer True" ) and Officer Brandon Bray (" Officer Bray" ) were assigned to a proactive unit that targets violent criminals, repeat offenders, and people with warrants. On July 28, 2013, they were in uniform in a marked patrol car conducting surveillance on a house at 4311 East Linwood because they had received information that Thomas and Edward Prang (" Prang" ) were residing at that location. Both Thomas and Prang had active felony warrants. Officer Bray was in the driver's seat and was using binoculars.

Both officers recognized Thomas and Prang by sight from previous contacts. While the officers had surveillance on the apartment, Thomas and Prang drove up to the back lot of the apartment in a black Honda Accord. Thomas was driving. Thomas and Prang exited the vehicle and walked toward the residence. A man standing nearby said something to them, after which they both looked in the direction of the officers and then walked inside the residence. The officers radioed for backup so they could surround the residence. However, about a minute later, before backup arrived, Thomas exited the residence, got into the driver's seat of the Honda, and drove from the back of the residence to the front of the residence.

As Thomas pulled up to the front of the residence, Prang ran out and got into the passenger seat. The officers activated their lights and siren and attempted to stop the vehicle. Thomas looked at the officers and sped away. Thomas was driving at speeds in excess of 70 to 80 miles per hour in areas where the speed limit was 35 to 45 miles per hour. The patrol car reached up to 91 miles per hour but was unable to catch Thomas. Due to the dangerous nature of the pursuit, the officers decided to discontinue it, write a report and wait for Thomas to be picked up later.

Both officers testified that they observed Thomas driving the vehicle before and during the pursuit and ...


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