Man who bragged about high-speed chase going to federal prison

Lee Nichols

A man who bragged about outrunning the cops won’t be going anywhere for a while.

Lee E. Nichols, 35, of Cahokia, was sentenced this week to 71 months in federal prison for unlawfully possessing methamphetamine and a gun, U.S. Attorney Steven D. Weinhoeft said.

U.S. District Judge Staci M. Yandle handed down the sentence, which the parties agreed to as part of a negotiated plea agreement. Nichols was also ordered to serve a three-year term of supervised release and must forfeit his gun.

Court information states that sometime around midnight on June 21, 2017, a Dupo police officer attempted a traffic stop on a Corvette that Nichols was driving. Nichols fled and led police on a high-speed chase. The pursuit was terminated for safety reasons on the Jefferson Barracks Bridge headed into Missouri, but recognizing Nichols from past encounters, officers obtained warrants for his arrest and immediately began looking for him.

Just two hours after speeding away from police, Nichols posted about his reckless getaway on Facebook, boasting that he had been going over 120 miles per hour. A week later, Nichols uploaded a video to his Facebook page about his run from the law, claiming he would do it again and threatening to hurt any police officer who got in his way.

On July 16, 2017, Nichols was caught when an off-duty Dupo police officer recognized him at a bar in Columbia. On-duty officers arrived and immediately arrested Nichols on the outstanding warrants. During the arrest, officers discovered less than a gram of methamphetamine in Nichols’ front pants pocket and a loaded Colt .22 pistol in his back pocket.

Nichols is legally barred from possessing a firearm as a result of his criminal history, which includes a 2003 conviction for aggravated assault.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and the Dupo Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Hoell.

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