Suspects Threw Bombs At Joplin Police Officers To Escape Pursuit

Ketih Wald and Nathan Felton initially escaped after throwing bombs at Joplin police.

Keith Wald and Nathan Felton initially escaped after throwing bombs at Joplin police.

Suspects Arrested After Initially Escaping By Throwing Bombs At Police

Joplin, MO –  Two suspects who threw explosives at Joplin police officers during a traffic stop and pursuit are now in custody.

The incident occurred about 3:30 AM Monday morning at 4th and Sergeant, when an unidentified Joplin police officer stopped a truck that was pulling a trailer for not having taillights, according to KTTS.

Joplin police said that the officer had just finished talking with the truck’s occupants, Keith Wald of Joplin, and Nathan Felton of Neosho, when a second Joplin police officer arrived to assist.

As that officer got out of his cruiser, one of the truck’s occupants threw an explosive device out of the window, which immediately exploded. The truck then fled, and the officers initiated pursuit.  During the pursuit, a second explosive device was thrown out of a truck window, which also immediately exploded.

The pursuit continued into Cherokee County, Kansas, where officers lost sight of the truck at Highway 400 and Messer.  None of the officers were injured by the explosions.  A Joplin police officer lost control of his cruiser at Lone Elk and Surrey during the pursuit, and his cruiser hit a tree. He was not injured.  None of the officers were identified.

Police later located the truck and trailer, which had been abandoned, within the Joplin city limits, according to NewsTalk KZRG.  The truck is a 2001 white Ford F-150 with an extended cab.  It has a broken back window, and was towing a flatbed trailer.

Both Wald and Felton were located on Monday afternoon at a Joplin residence, and have been arrested on charges of 2nd degree assault on law enforcement, armed criminal action, felony resisting arrest, and unlawful possession of an illegal weapon.  They are in jail under $500,000 bond, with $250,000 of that amount in cash.