A 37-year-old Texas man has been identified as the suspect arrested following a pursuit that started in Scotts Bluff County Sunday evening and ultimately ended in Wyoming just west of the state line.
According to a joint release from the Scotts Bluff and Goshen County Sheriff’s Offices, shortly after 6 p.m. on September 6, 2020 law enforcement responded to a report of a tan colored Nissan SUV “driving all over the road.” A Scotts Bluff County Deputy located the vehicle near Mitchell, and a pursuit ensued when the driver refused to stop. The Scottsbluff Police Department took over the pursuit as the vehicle entered their jurisdiction. Eventually the vehicle fled westbound on Highway 26 at speeds up to 100 mph, and Wyoming authorities were notified.
Responding officers made multiple attempts to deploy spike strips, and a Lyman NE officer was successful as the vehicle neared the state line. The vehicle stopped a short distance into Wyoming and the driver was taken into custody by Goshen County Sheriff’s Deputies, assisted by Scottsbluff PD Officers and a Scotts Bluff County Deputy.
A Goshen County Sheriff’s Deputy suffered a dislocated finger during the arrest. He was treated and released at the Torrington hospital.
The suspect is identified as Steven Benjamin Willis, of Granbury, Texas who was wanted on a Colorado felony warrant for parole violation. Online records from the Colorado Department of Corrections say Willis had been convicted in July 2017 and sentenced to 8 years in Mesa County, Colorado, and was parole-eligible in May of this year.
Following the end of the pursuit, Willis was found to be in possession of suspected methamphetamine, suspected heroin and prescription pills as well as a large amount of cash. Willis was lodged in the Goshen County jail on the warrant and charges related to the pursuit. According to the Goshen County Sheriff’s website, those charges include four felony and two misdemeanor drug charges, as well as driving while under the influence of a controlled substance.
Nebraska charges are pending and a warrant will be requested.
Agencies involved included the Scotts Bluff County and Goshen County Sheriff’s Office, Scottsbluff PD, Mitchell PD, Morrill PD, Lyman PD, Wyoming Highway Patrol, Morrill Fire Department, AirLink, Valley Ambulance and the Torrington Ambulance Service.