Jul 08, 2024

Stolen Vehicles, Stolen Firearms Recovered after Multi-County Pursuit Ends In Ogallala

Posted Jul 08, 2024 7:41 PM
Michael Ayala (Courtesy of Keith County Jail)
Michael Ayala (Courtesy of Keith County Jail)

Cody Thomas

Nebraska State Patrol

JULY 8, 2024 (OGALLALA, NEB.)  — Nebraska State Troopers arrested three people and recovered multiple stolen firearms after pursuits with two stolen vehicles Saturday.

The incident began at around 12:15 p.m. MT Saturday, troopers learned that the Ogallala Police Department was in pursuit of a Ford F-150 pickup that was stolen out of Wyoming. Ogallala PD officers discontinued the pursuit as it traveled through Ogallala out of concern for public safety.

A trooper then observed the same vehicle as it exited Interstate 80 at the Brule interchange a short time later. The trooper attempted a traffic stop, but the driver refused to yield and fled westbound on Highway 30. The trooper initiated a pursuit. After entering Deuel County, the vehicle turned southbound and continued fleeing on county roads. The vehicle continued south of I-80 before coming to a stop at a residence near County Road 209 and County Road 4. All three occupants fled the vehicle on foot.

(Courtesy of Nebraska State Patrol)
(Courtesy of Nebraska State Patrol)

Two of the occupants then stole a Ford F-350 that was parked at the farm residence. Troopers remained in pursuit of the second stolen vehicle, while others remained at the scene to search for the third suspect. The suspects fled on various county roads in Deuel, Perkins, and Keith Counties before the returning to I-80 and fleeing eastbound. As the vehicle passed the Ogallala interchange, the Ogallala Police Department was able to successfully deploy stop sticks, which brought to the vehicle to a stop a short time later.

The two occupants were taken into custody without further incident at approximately 1:00 p.m. MT. The third suspect was taken into custody after a search of the location where the first vehicle was abandoned. All three were transported to Keith County Jail. Troopers located stolen firearms, stolen credits cards, and methamphetamine inside the first stolen vehicle.

All three suspects were arrested for possession of a stolen vehicle, possession of stolen firearms, possession of methamphetamine, possession of a stolen financial transaction device, obstruction, and criminal mischief. The driver, Michael Ayala, 20, was also arrested for flight to avoid arrest and willful reckless driving. The two other occupants are both minors, age 18.

The investigation remains ongoing.