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Driver pleads guilty to running down joggers

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

In this file photo, Vincent T. Anderson is escorted to the Jackson Courthouse for his preliminary hearing Tuesday afternoon, Dec. 11, 2012.
(Laura Simon)
An Arkansas man on Tuesday pleaded guilty to a felony assault charge in connection with an Oct. 28 incident in which he is accused of stealing a car and running down three joggers in Cape Girardeau.

Vincent T. Anderson, 19, faces up to 15 years in prison.

Prosecutors initially charged Anderson with five felony counts but amended the first charge to include all three victims and dropped the remaining charges in exchange for an admission of guilt.

Anderson was accused of stealing a 1994 Ford Thunderbird from Kidd's convenience store on Broadway and deliberately driving it into a group of joggers, striking three of them -- Southeast Missouri State University provost Ron Rosati, Paul Schell and Laura Sheridan.

None of the victims was seriously injured.

According to court documents, police took a smartphone from Anderson's passenger, Marcus E. Jones, 27, that contained videos in which the men talked about stealing the vehicle and hitting pedestrians.

Prosecutors said in one of the videos, Anderson said he and Jones "had fun like on 'Grand Theft Auto,'" a popular video game.

In December, Judge Gary Kamp sentenced Jones to 90 days in county jail for his role in the car theft. Jones pleaded guilty to vehicle tampering in October and was convicted of resisting arrest in November.

Prosecutors said Jones told Anderson to hit the runners.

During a motion hearing Tuesday, Judge Scott Thomsen asked Anderson to describe, in his own words, what he did. Anderson seemed confused by the question and offered no description or explanation for his actions.

Sentencing is set for May 21.



Pertinent address:

100 Court St., Jackson, Mo.

William Street and South Main Street, Cape Girardeau, Mo.

1325 Broadway, Cape Girardeau, Mo.

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get the rope

-- Posted by bagman75 on Tue, Apr 23, 2013, at 4:23 PM

This is pathetic. Why plea this case down? They had these guys dead to rights.

This type of thing just tells the criminal that it's no worse to commit a whole hand full of crimes than it is to commit one. This is one of the major broken pieces in our legal system.

-- Posted by malan on Tue, Apr 23, 2013, at 6:33 PM

I agree...don't plead them down. they can't tell the difference in a game and reality!!?? morons.

-- Posted by recovr1959 on Wed, Apr 24, 2013, at 6:51 AM

What are our attorneys and judges doing? Why would they plead this case down? This guy deserves a lot more than 15 years in prison, if that is what the judge gives him. And, frankly, his passenger deserves the same. He was willing to go along with this and helped plan. 90 days for car theft? 90 days for stealing a car? I don't get it. All of these little thieves around here can do 90 days standing on their heads! What the hell is Judge Kamp thinking?

-- Posted by momspoppies on Wed, Apr 24, 2013, at 2:50 PM

Plea deal is guarenteed jail time. There is the chance a jury will have to find not guilty due to the instructions and evidence allowed in a trial.

But if you Ding Dongs ever served on a jury you would know this.

-- Posted by Tribune on Wed, Apr 24, 2013, at 3:37 PM

Just think of all the taxpayer money that would have been saved if one of the joggers had a CCW;)

-- Posted by dfgt4554 on Wed, Apr 24, 2013, at 5:49 PM

I've served on a jury 3 times in my life and I still think it's bunk to plea down when it's nearly a sure thing there will be a conviction.

The system is broken and we need to start fixing it somewhere. May as well be with the obvious.

-- Posted by malan on Wed, Apr 24, 2013, at 8:50 PM

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