Missouri man who led police on high-speed chase in stolen vehicle pleads guilty to illegal weapons

Guilty Plea

A Kansas City, Missouri, man who led police officers on a high-speed chase in a stolen vehicle pleaded guilty in federal court to illegally possessing a firearm.

Chance Ayers, 25, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes to being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

On March 12, 2019, a Kansas City police detective saw Ayers driving a maroon 2002 Mercury Sable, which had been reported stolen when the keys were taken during a burglary earlier that day. The detective followed Ayers to a gas station, where he pulled up next to the front of the building. Ayers was arrested after a brief car chase. Ayers had two 12-gauge shotgun shells in his right front pants pocket at the time of his arrest.

When officers searched Ayers’ vehicle, they found a loaded New England 12-gauge sawed-off shotgun on the driver’s side floorboard. Two more shotgun shells were found on the floor next to the shotgun.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Ayers has prior felony convictions for burglary, theft and criminal damage. He was on state parole at the time of the alleged offense.

Under federal statutes, Ayers is subject to a sentence of up to 10 years in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Catherine A. Connelly. It was investigated by the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.