JOPLIN, Mo. — A Joplin man is in custody after leading authorities on a lengthy pursuit over the weekend.

Marc Thomas, 27, of Joplin, was apprehended late Saturday night after ditching his crashed stolen car near Newman Rd and Florida Ave. and attempting to swim across Turkey Creek.

Marc Thomas booking photo

Officers with the Joplin Police Department first made contact with Thomas around 10:30 PM after receiving a call for a man driving in circles around the Rangeline Wal-Mart in a car matching the description of a stolen vehicle.

JPD attempted to stop Thomas near 20th and Ozark Ave until he fled east into Duquesne, then north to Newman Rd, and finally east on Newman Rd where tire deflation traps were used. That’s when Thomas’ car then went off the road west of Newman and north Florida Ave, crashing into a tree and stopping. Despite crossing Turkey Creek Thomas was caught shortly after.

In a release, JPD said the stolen vehicle report came from even earlier that day just before 5:00 PM. In that report, an elderly couple living at 2512 S. New Hampshire Ave was said to be assaulted by a man, and have their 2005 Toyota Tacoma stolen. That man, Marc Thomas, resided with the couple at that address.

Allegedly, Thomas came home under the influence of drugs, forcing his way into the couple’s bedroom and assaulting them. The elderly woman was struck just below her eye leaving a large bruise, while the man was knocked to the ground and choked. Thomas was said to have stolen the keys to their car and fled the scene where he was spotted and pursued by JPD later that night.

Marc Thomas faces the following criminal charges filed by the Jasper County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office:

  • (2x) Domestic Assault – 2nd Degree (D Felony)
  • Domestic Assault – 4th Degree (A Misdemeanor)
  • Tampering with a Motor Vehicle – 1st Degree (D Felony)
  • Resisting/Interfering with Arrest for a Felony (E Felony)
  • DWI (B Misdemeanor)

Thomas remains in custody at the Jasper County Jail.