Two Men Charged with Illegal Firearm Following Police Chase, Collision
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that two men were charged in federal court today with illegally possessing a firearm following a head-on collision with a police vehicle in a Quik Trip parking lot while attempting to flee from officers.
Curlie Pruitt, III, 36, and Roy L. House, 38, addresses unknown, were charged in a criminal complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Mo. Pruitt and House remain in federal custody pending a detention hearing, which has not yet been scheduled.
Today’s federal criminal complaint charges Pruitt and House with being felons in possession of a firearm.
According to an affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, Independence police officers were contacted by an employee at the Super 8 Hotel, 4031 S. Lynn Court Drive, Independence, at approximately 8:36 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2016, in regard to two men – later identified as Pruitt and House – who were acting suspiciously. The employee feared the men were going to rob the hotel, the affidavit says. They left the hotel but returned at approximately 9:05 p.m.
When officers arrived at the hotel, the affidavit says, Pruitt and House were in a blue Ford 500 and were leaving the area, with Pruitt driving. A police officer activated the emergency equipment on his patrol vehicle to initiate a traffic stop, however, Pruitt allegedly accelerated the vehicle and drove through the parking lot of the Quik Trip at 4024 S. Noland Road, Independence. As Pruitt’s vehicle continued at a high rate of speed through the parking lot, traveling toward S. Noland Road, it collided head-on with the patrol vehicle of another officer who was responding to assist. The collision was severe enough to disable both vehicles.
Pruitt immediately attempted to exit his vehicle and flee, the affidavit says, but was trapped by a third police vehicle that pinned the driver’s side door closed. Pruitt and House were placed under arrest. Officers found a loaded American Tactical .45-caliber semi-automatic handgun on the floor board of the front passenger seat area.
According to the affidavit, Pruitt and House are suspected of the armed robberies of the Road Star Gas Station, 11100 E. US 40 Hwy., Independence, on Dec. 11, 2016; Beeline Mini-Mart, 1005 Isley Blvd., Excelsior Springs, Mo., on Dec. 15, 2016; and Discount Smoke Shop, 4718 N.E. Vivion Rd., Kansas City, Mo., on Dec. 18, 2016.
Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Pruitt has prior felony convictions for assault and robbery, as well as a prior federal conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm for which he was sentenced to three years and one month in federal prison. House has prior convictions for assault and robbery as well as a federal conviction for carjacking for which he was sentenced to 11 years and five months in federal prison. House is currently serving a term of supervised release for that federal conviction.
Dickinson cautioned that the charge contained in this complaint is simply an accusation, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charge must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Bruce Rhoades. It was investigated by the Independence, Mo., Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.