A Missouri woman who led law enforcement officers on a high-speed chase at night with no headlights was sentenced in federal court for trafficking methamphetamine.
Gina N. Nunez, 44, of Nixa, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to 12 years in federal prison without parole.
On Jan. 13, 2022, Nunez pleaded guilty to one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Nunez admitted that she was in possession of methamphetamine found in her vehicle after she led officers on a high-speed chase over two stop strips before crashing her vehicle and being arrested.
A sergeant with the Christian County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department attempted to stop Nunez, who was driving a gray Honda on U.S. Highway 65, a few minutes before midnight on June 27, 2021. She was driving approximately 17 to 32 miles per hour on the highway and crossing over the center line. Nunez waved at the officer as he followed her with his emergency lights and siren on for approximately three minutes. Nunez then accelerated to speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour northbound on U.S. Highway 65 to the Finley River bridge, where Ozark, Mo., police officers had positioned spike strips. Nunez continued traveling at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour, without headlights, into Greene County.
The Greene County Sheriff’s Department deployed a spike strip near U.S. Highway 65 and Chestnut Expressway. Nunez continued northbound on U.S. Highway 65 at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour. At approximately 12:16 a.m., Nunez exited the highway onto Interstate 44 and crashed into the guardrail. Her vehicle was disabled, and she was arrested.
Law enforcement officers searched Nunez’s vehicle and found six plastic bags in the front passenger floorboard that contained a total of 134 grams of pure methamphetamine, as well as multiple baggies of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Officers also found a purse that contained numerous knives.
Nunez has multiple convictions for possession of a controlled substance, multiple convictions for possession of a controlled substance for distribution, and a conviction for accessory to murder in which the victim was beaten with a baseball bat and stabbed repeatedly.
This case was prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron A. Beaver. It was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Christian County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Greene County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Springfield, Mo., Police Department, the Nixa, Mo., Police Department, and the Ozark, Mo., Police Department.