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Saturday, September 26, 2020, Stringtown Assistant Chief of Police Zachary Rice was sitting in a stationary position on city right-of-way just east of the railroad tracks off of State Highway 43 east.
The officer was checking vehicle speeds when he observed a silver 2003 GMC 3500 pickup come down the hill on State Highway 43 east, heading west.
The vehicle was not speeding, however when the vehicle approached, the driver made direct eye contact with Assistant Chief Rice and waved with the driver side window down.
The officer looked at the license plate and observed: the tailgate was missing, there was significant damage to the passenger side rear fender and bumper of the vehicle, and a 2019 decal on the license plate.
After running the plate number, it was confirmed the vehicle was stolen out of Bryan County.
Assistant Chief Rice turned north onto U.S. Highway 69 and caught up to the vehicle to conduct a traffic stop. The vehicle came to a stop near the intersection of Highway 69 and Fred’s Fish Camp Road.
The driver put his left hand out the window as if he was letting the officer know he was unarmed.
Atoka County Dispatch confirmed the vehicle was stolen. Rice radioed for backup.
At that time, the driver drove away erratically. Atoka County Dispatch was advised the driver had taken off and Assistant Chief Rice was in pursuit.
The officer activated his siren and emergency lighting. Heading north, the pursuit accelerated to speeds of 100 miles per hour.
The driver passed a pickup on the shoulder and then cut back across both lanes of traffic to continued north.
As the pursuit neared the Mack Alford Center of Corrections, the driver began to slow, attempting to turn onto Wesley Road, but was traveling to fast to complete the turn.
The pursuit continued north on Highway 69, turning west onto State Highway 43.
The driver came to a stop on the shoulder. Assistant Chief Rice stopped his unit and exited, using the driver door for cover as he drew his weapon. The officer ordered the occupants out of the vehicle multiple times.
The driver, ignoring the commands, peeled out and proceeded west, once again accelerating to around 100 miles per hour.
The chase proceeded across Atoka Lake bridge. The driver attempted to turn onto North Wardville Road, but was traveling too fast to make the turn.
The driver turned north onto Tisdale Road all the way to the intersection of North Wardville Road. The pursuit continued down North Wardville Road and accelerating to 65 or 70 miles per hour on the county road.
Turning east onto Kelly Road, which is also a driveway and an oil field lease road, as they topped a hill a white pickup was ran off of the roadway by the eluding driver.
The driver turned into a private residence and at high speeds drove through the land owner’s yard, narrowly missing children who were outside the residence.
The reckless driver continued east and struck a closed iron gate and proceeded into the land owners field, traveling south toward a large pond.
Assistant Chief Rice could not follow the pickup in his patrol unit.
A driver, who was ran off the road by the eluding vehicle, came to Rice’s location and offered to take him into the field; however, the officer waited for back up.
The children were all accounted for and unharmed.
The land owner, Jim Rhyne arrived, advising the officer that he and his brother, Sam Rhyne, would search for the people who occupied the vehicle, or just the vehicle.
Choctaw Tribal Officer Anthony Garvin arrived on scene and was accompanied by the Rhyne brothers down into the field. A short time later, they returned walking a detained female. The female had not been the suspect Assistant Chief Rice had seen in the vehicle, and she was unknown to him during the pursuit.
The female was placed in the rear seat of Rice’s patrol unit. The vehicle had been recovered; however, the male and female had fled on foot and were not located.
Atoka County Deputies Aubrey Stanfield and Kevin Anderson, Oklahoma Highway Patrol Troopers John Fugate and Seth Leyba arrived on scene to assist with the search of the two who had escaped.
Choctaw Tribal Officer Garvin transported the female to the Atoka County Jail.
Coal County Under Sheriff Phillip Magby was contacted to bring his service dog “POLO” to the scene to attempt and track the male and female. The tracking attempt was unsuccessful.
Located inside the truck was a small baggy of methamphetamine, a black cell phone, some tools, and clothing, but nothing else.
The search was called off. Assistant Chief Rice spoke with the land owner and his family, advising them to keep an eye out for the two.
The next morning, Sunday, September 27, 2020, Rice arrived at the Atoka County Jail along with Stringtown Officer Clifford Taylor to interview the female found in the pickup.
The driver was identified as Marshall Ray Hogan, 36, and the female passenger was identified as Stevi Nicole Morgan, 33, both of Atoka.
The woman stated she needed a ride to the store to get cigarettes. The two had picked her up, traveling the back roads to Stringtown. She stated they were going to go to the Choctaw Travel Plaza to get cigarettes and then to the casino, but the above events took place instead.
The woman was believed to be innocent and was released.
Hogan and Morgan are both charged with possession of a stolen vehicle (felony), endangering others while eluding (felony), possession of controlled dangerous substance (misdemeanor), unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia (misdemeanor), reckless driving (misdemeanor), and leaving scene of accident involving damage (misdemeanor).