A golf club wielding suspect is being held without bond after his high speed run through Osage Beach came to an abrupt halt when a citizen armed with a gun jumped in front of the van he was driving.
Gary L. Nelson, 56, of Gravois Mills is being held in the Camden County Jail. Nelson is charged with resisting arrest, two counts of assault on a police officer, failure to yield and failure to obey traffic device.
Witnesses to the incident confirmed the citizen's involvement. Police declined to comment. The citizen apparently saw the incident unfolding. The individual reportedly had a CCW permit for the weapon.
The incident began around 3 p.m. on Oct. 25 when Osage Beach Communications received a call of a subject operating a 2013 U-Haul van in the area of the Osage Beach Parkway and Highway KK. The caller said the man in the U-Haul appeared to be sleeping or not paying attention at the intersection. While the officer was responding, additional calls were received that the suspect vehicle was east bound on the Osage Beach Parkway traveling at a high rate of speed in the area of Malibu Road. The vehicle was then reported stopped in the middle of the Parkway in the area of J. Bruner’s Restaurant.
The responding officer located the suspect vehicle backed up next to the Bridgeport building located at 5020 Osage Beach Parkway. As the officer pulled into the parking lot to make contact with the driver, the operator of the U-Haul began pulling forward. The officer motioned for the driver to stop. The driver, later identified as 56 year old, Gary L. Nelson of Gravois Mills , formerly from Davenport, Ia., exited the parking lot and onto eastbound Hwy 54.
The officer attempted to stop Nelson as he proceeded onto the Passover Road exit at which time he accelerated and continued onto northbound Passover road. Nelson continued onto eastbound Osage Beach Parkway in excess of 67 mph. Nelson drove into the turn lane of the Osage Beach Factory Outlet mall and failed to stop for the red light continuing east at times swerving into the center turn lane.
At the western most Walmart Super Center entrance, Nelson made a right turn across all eastbound lanes of traffic failing to stop at the red light and turned into the Wal-Mart Supercenter parking lot. Nelson drove in the oncoming traffic lane in the Walmart parking lot. Nelson proceeded to the front of the Wal-Mart store and made an abrupt left failing to stop at the stop sign in front of the store. Nelson proceeded to the northern section of the parking lot, reaching speeds of over 50 mph. Nelson continued through the parking lot to the eastern most exit. Nelson then exited onto Osage Beach Parkway north traveling eastbound, swerving from lane to lane between vehicles. Nelson continued to accelerate and reached speeds in excess of 75 mph in the area of the Home Depot exit.
Page 2 of 2 - Nelson continued on the Osage Beach parkway exiting onto Highway D and turned into the HyVee Food parking lot driving through the lot at excessive speeds. Nelson traveled in front of the HyVee / Target Stores and stopped abruptly. Officers ordered Nelson to exit his vehicle. As the officers were attempting to unlatch Nelson’s seatbelt, he, Nelson, attempted to pull forward. An officer was able to shut the vehicle off. Nelson attempted to strike the officers with a golf club at which time Nelson was pepper sprayed. Nelson was removed from the vehicle and detained. Osage Beach Ambulance personnel were called to respond to the area for decontamination purposes.
Nelson was taken to Lake Regional Hospital where he was found to be fit for confinement. Nelson was then transported to the Camden County Jail.