Phelps CountySheriff's Department
On November 3, 2022, at about 8:58 AM, Deputies were dispatched to the 23000 block of State Highway P for a report of suspicious activity. The reporting party stated that two white males were pulling a trailer with kayaks when it came loose from the towing vehicle and ended up in the ditch. The reporting party further stated the two men hooked the trailer back up and drove east on State Highway P.
A short time later, the Missouri State Highway Patrol stopped the vehicle for an unrelated traffic violation on State Highway D. Deputies questioned the driver, Justin E. Barnwell, age 25, of Jerome, Missouri. When asked about the kayaks, Barwell said he obtained them legally. Deputies later learned they were stolen out of Pulaski County.
A search of Barnwell’s vehicle revealed drug paraphernalia and numerous pieces of stolen mail and credit cards belonging to people in both Phelps and Pulaski County.
A search of his residence revealed more stolen credit cards, mail, and methamphetamine. Barnwell was arrested for possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia. He was transported to the Phelps County Jail.
A warrant was issued on Barnwell for Possession of a Controlled Substance. He later posted a $25,000 bond and was released. This investigation is continuing, and additional felony charges are expected.
The charges for which Barnwell was arrested are merely accusations and are not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented before a court of competent jurisdiction whose duty is to determine the guilt or innocence.
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