Columbia man faces numerous charges in chase with police

Dan Field

Kenneth Rybolt, 26, of Columbia, is facing multiple Miller County and Camden County charges after a wild vehicle chase Saturday, August 14 that ended with the suspect apprehended in the lake.

The charges from both counties resulted because the chase began in Lake Ozark/Miller County and ended in Camden County. He is currently being held in Miller County Jail.

Rybolt is facing Miller County charges of:

•First degree assault or attempt – serious physical injury.

•Resisting arrest/detention/stop by fleeing and creating a substantial risk or serious injury/death.

Camden County charges include:

•First degree assault or attempt – serious physical injury.

•Two charges of tampering with a motor vehicle in the first degree.

•Resisting arrest/detention/stop by fleeing and creating a substantial risk or serious injury/death.

•Escaping or attempting to escape from custody while under arrest for a felony.

•Careless and imprudent driving involving an accident.

•Burglary in the second degree.

•Tampering with an airplane/motorboat in the first degree.

•Property damage in the second degree.

A little after 3 p.m. Saturday, the Lake Ozark Police Department responded to a call of shoplifting at Kohl’s Department Store in Eagles’ Landing. 

The reporting party was an employee just getting off work and was in the parking lot when he called the LOPD. The reporting party was being followed by the suspect into the Marcus Theatre parking lot. Two of the LOPD officers arrived, blocked in the suspect car (later determined to be stolen from Columbia a week prior) when the suspect rammed one of LOPD cars and got away. The pursuit ensued on Bagnell Dam Blvd. where the suspect hit another vehicle in traffic head-on in the Break Time/JB Hooks area. The suspect then left the scene and drove down past the post office and instead of turning into Woods Supermarket, drove straight off the roadway, down an incline and then went off the first layer of the cliff above the Rt. MM highway, stopping just short of going off the cliff onto MM highway. 

The suspect got out of car, ran to the MM stoplight, attempted to carjack a car at the stoplight and was finally apprehended by one of our officers and Miller County deputy. The suspect was handcuffed behind his back and shackled around his ankles and placed in the back seat of our car. Somehow the suspect was able to get his hands from behind his back (still cuffed), broke the cage partition and was able to climb in the driver’s seat and took off with the LOPD car over the Community Toll Bridge. 

A Miller County deputy and an LOPD officer had to run back up the hill to the Miller County squad car since they did not have sight of the LOPD car. In the meantime, Camden County received a call from a resident in Porto Cima that a LOPD car had crashed and the suspect attempted to steal their car. The suspect also broke into an unoccupied house in that neighborhood, stole a key for a personal watercraft and was attempting to steal that PWC when the Missouri State Water Patrol pulled up. The suspect jumped into the water and was trying to hide under a dock.  An LOPD officer jumped into the water and re-apprehended the suspect (still cuffed and shackled).   

“Thankfully, no one was injured in this entire incident. We have two cars with damage,” Police Chief Gary Launderville said.

The stolen car from Columbia is totaled and full of property that has probably been stolen, according to the chief. The car that was hit head-on by the suspect has extensive damage. Those people were checked out by medics and released.