Platte City man lands back in jail following car chase

A 24-year-old man well known to authorities in Platte County recently landed himself back in custody, charged with a pair of crimes after a brief chase in a stolen vehicle. Zachary Mercer

Zachary Q. Mercer of Platte City faces one count each of felony resisting a lawful stop by fleeing and misdemeanor tampering with a motor vehicle. He remains at the Platte County Detention Center on a $10,000 cash-only bond because the arrest violated his probation from a yet-to-be adjudicated 2014 case involving a gun and ingested marijuana.

According to court documents, Mercer was arrested in a wooded area in Tracy, Mo. on Wednesday, July 8 after leading multiple law enforcement agencies on a car chase that day.

The Leavenworth (Kan.) County Sheriff’s Office terminated a pursuit of a four-door Toyota on Highway 92 as the vehicle traveled into Missouri. A Platte County Sheriff’s Office deputy spotted the vehicle at about 12:55 p.m. and tried to initiate a stop, but the driver, a white male with facial hair and sunglasses later identified as Mercer, drove off again at a high rate of speed.

The deputy later found the Toyota, confirmed stolen out of Kansas, unoccupied at a dead end on First Street in Tracy.

Officers followed footprints into a muddy, wooded area and located two Nike shoes in the mud. Shortly after, Mercer was found in the area of First and Trebble Streets and taken into custody. Authorities found gift cards, a personal check not in Mercer’s name and two sets of keys in the Toyota.

Mercer’s last run-in with Platte County authorities came in September of 2014 when he was arrested following a vehicle check of a 2007 Dodge Caravan believed to be involved in a burglary that resulted in the theft of a handgun. According to court documents, Mercer disobeyed loud verbal commands and reached into his pocket after exiting the vehicle, stuffing an item into his mouth.

The suspect ingested the item, which he told officers was marijuana.

A resulting search of the vehicle found a syringe loaded with a clear liquid, a black bag with 12½ grams of suspected marijuana, two scales with apparent marijuana residue on them and about 100 small, plastic baggies, consistent with the use in sales of narcotics. In that case, he faces a pair of felonies, including possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute and theft of a handgun.

Mercer posted 10 percent of a bond reduced to $3,500 in that case on April 8, 2015.