The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

March 13, 2013

Two wounded in Joplin police shooting

JOPLIN, Mo. — Two people were wounded in a police shooting Tuesday night when an argument over an alleged drug deal outside a Wal-Mart store in Joplin drew the attention of officers in an unmarked car.

The officer-involved shooting took place shortly before 11 p.m. on the north end of the parking lot of the Wal-Mart store at 1501 S. Range Line Road.

Lt. Brian Lewis of the Joplin Police Department said Officer David McGough shot two occupants of a small pickup truck that swerved at him after he identified himself as a police officer and ordered the driver to stop.

Justin C. Gage, 24, was shot in the right shoulder, and his passenger, Tyeler K. Whetstone, 22, was shot in the ring finger of her left hand as they fled the parking lot, Lewis said. Their vehicle was stopped by police moments later at Range Line Road and Ninth Street. They were taken to Freeman Hospital West and treated for their wounds before being taken to the Joplin City Jail.

“They weren’t life-threatening injuries,” Lewis said.

Gage was charged with first-degree assault on a law enforcement officer and remained in custody Wednesday on a $25,000 bond, with a cash-only amount of $5,000.

Whetstone was charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver after two bags of methamphetamine allegedly were found on her at the hospital. She was being held on a $10,000 bond. The two are from Joplin.

McGough and Cpl. Trevor Duncan were working an anti-theft detail in an unmarked car in the parking lot of the store when they observed a dispute break out between the two suspects and another man, Lewis said. When the officers approached the disputants, the other man ran, with Duncan in pursuit.

As McGough turned his attention to the occupants of the pickup truck, Gage allegedly drove straight at him after backing out of a parking space. Lewis said an initial report of the incident states that McGough, who escaped injury, had identified himself as a police officer and ordered the driver to stop before firing any shots.

A probable-cause affidavit filed Wednesday states that Whetstone admitted to an investigator that she was attempting to sell meth in the parking lot. The man who ran away was apprehended, but no charge has been filed against him.

Lewis said the initial report does not state how many shots McGough fired or what the trajectories of the shots were with respect to the truck and its occupants. Those matters are being investigated internally, he said.

The Joplin Police Department in recent years changed its policy with respect to police shootings, Lewis said. In the past, the department would ask the Missouri State Highway Patrol to conduct probes of officer-involved shootings. He said the department now conducts its own investigations. He said that has become common practice among police forces of Joplin’s size.

On leave

TWO JOPLIN POLICE OFFICERS, David McGough and Cpl. Trevor Duncan, have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation of a police shooting Tuesday night outside a Wal-Mart store.

Text Only
Local News
  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • Cherokee County Commission accepts general counsel's resignation

    Kevin Cure, who has served as general counsel for the Cherokee County Commission since 2005, submitted a handwritten resignation to the board on Monday in the aftermath of a landfill controversy.

    July 22, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Parents can get help with school supplies

    I don’t know much about demographics other than the fact that I no longer belong to a “targeted demographic.” When I was younger, I was bombarded by commercials and ads from companies that were trying to sell me things that I not only needed but wanted.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jasper County Commission reviews traffic plans

    The Jasper County Commission will hold public hearings today and Thursday on a number of traffic changes proposed in the county. No one spoke when the first hearing was held Tuesday as part of the regular commission meeting, according to Jim Honey, Eastern District associate commissioner.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Neosho school board hires company to manage substitutes

    Citing its hopes of shifting health care costs and utilizing more time from retired teachers, the Neosho Board of Education granted a contract Monday to a temporary employee company to manage its substitute teacher program.

    July 22, 2014

  • Main Street TIF district study to begin

    A measure that allows the city to charge its $15,000 in administrative costs for studying a proposal to create a tax increment financing district on South Main Street was approved Monday by the Joplin City Council.

    July 21, 2014

  • Carthage man pleads guilty in sexual abuse case

    A Carthage man pleaded guilty Monday to sexual abuse of a 12-year-old girl in a plea agreement that would cap the length of his prison term at no more than 15 years.

    July 21, 2014

Must Read


A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter