Traffic stop on Highway 36 ends with seizure of Uzi submachine gun, ammunition and drugs

Livingston County Sheriff Car

The Livingston County Sheriff’s Office and the Northwest Missouri Interagency Team Response Operation-Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Task Force are investigating an incident earlier this week.

Sheriff Steve Cox reports Deputy Nicholas Leadbetter stopped a vehicle late at night on Highway 36 because it was being driven as if the driver was impaired or falling asleep. Two men from Chicago occupied the vehicle and were said to be returning to Chicago from Kansas City.

Leadbetter believed a separate crime was taking place, and the Chillicothe Police assisted with the traffic stop. Cox says K-9 Zaki alerted to the odor of a drug or drugs. He notes a search of the vehicle revealed marijuana, a hidden compartment in the trunk that appeared to have been recently used to transport a large number of drugs and/or currency, an Uzi firearm, and ammunition.

Investigation suggests one or both of the men are gang affiliates in Chicago. It was noted one has an arrest history that includes homicide. The other man did not have a criminal record, and Cox says that man claimed ownership of everything in the vehicle. He reports that, due to the totality of the circumstances, the firearm, ammunition, and drugs were seized.