Two teenagers are lucky to escape with minor injuries after an accident allegedly caused by distracted driving. According to the Highway Patrol, the two 16-year old girls from Holts Summit were on Missouri 17 in Miller County when the car went off the road. The driver overcorrected and the car went back off the road, down an embankment, hitting a tree and a fence before overturning. The patrol says the accident was caused by the driver of the vehicle looking at her phone. The teens were taken to St. Mary’s Hospital.
A Tuscumbia man was placed on a 24-hour hold when the Highway Patrol allegedly caught him with drugs in his vehicle. 22-year old Calen Mummert was taken into custody just after 6:30 Sunday night in Miller County. The patrol says he failed to drive on the right side of the roadway, and that resulted in a crash. Other pending charges include possession of methamphetamine, operating a motorcycle without the proper endorsement, and three other motor vehicle violations.
At least 10 people are arrested in the Lake Area by the highway patrol over the weekend. Nine of the 10 involved alcohol including 24-year-old Donald Kemper, of Jefferson City, who is charged according to the highway patrol with DWI-alcohol resulting in the death of another. All totaled, six people were taken into custody for boating while intoxicated and three people for driving while intoxicated. One other arrest, 35-year-old Timothy Thomas of Richland, was arrested for felony possession of methamphetamine and traffic-related offenses.
There were, at least, two incidents covered on the lake by the water patrol division of the highway patrol. The first happened Saturday afternoon when a deck boat operated by 26-year-old Christopher Gear, of St. Louis, took on water and sank at the 5.5 mile mark of the Big Niangua. The second incident happened Saturday evening when a Searay operated at the 8.2 mile mark of the main channel caught fire. The operator, 29-year-old Tyler Anthony of Olathe Kansas, and his passengers were able to escape injury. The boat, however, was totaled.
The Miller County Sheriff’s Department adds another name to the “most wanted” list. 41-year-old William Daniel Rowden, of Eldon, is wanted for felony non-support. Rowden is described as 6-foot with blue eyes and brown hair. Anyone with information on whereabouts should contact the Miller County Sheriff’s Department.
A former teacher in the School of the Osage District is scheduled to be in a Miller County courtroom Monday (06/25/2018) for a preliminary hearing on his charges involving sexual contact with a couple students. Mark Edwards was originally charged, in April, with one count each of statutory sodomy and sexual contact with a student…Edwards admitting to the contact according to the probable cause statement filed in Tuscumbia. Since then, the case has been amended to include two more charges…child molestation and another charge of sexual contact with a student. A motion for a bond reduction was denied in May. Edwards continues to be held in the Miller County Jail on a $300-thousand bond with a GPS requirement and an order of no contact unsupervised with anyone under the age of 18 should he bond out.
Racing hearts are heavy today following the death over the weekend of Jason Johnson…a World of Outlaws driver with roots here in the Lake Area. Johnson, who lived just a few miles down the road from the Lake Ozark Speedway, was battling for the lead on lap 18 of a 40-lap race at the Beaver Dam Raceway in Wisconsin…a one-third mile long dirt oval…when the crash happened. Johnson most recently took to the track in Eldon back in May with news of his death over the weekend shaking the world of racing which has seen its share of tragedy over recent years. Jason Johnson was 41.