A man convicted in connection with a high-speed chase in western Iowa has gotten his second-degree theft conviction reversed, but the more serious conviction stands. A Crawford County deputy spotted Jason Martin Powell driving near Denison back in February of 2005 and took up a chase because there was a warrant out for Powell’s arrest.
During the chase, the Crawford County sheriff put down stop sticks. As Powell drove around them he came within a few inches of hitting the sheriff, who was standing in a yard nearby. A jury convicted Powell of several charges, including second-degree theft. But Powell had left the truck’s owner a note, saying he intended to borrow the truck to drive to the hospital for medical treatment.
The Iowa Court of Appeals has ruled there is "insufficient" evidence to support Powell’s second-degree theft conviction. Instead, the Court of Appeals ruled Powell was guilty of the lesser charge of operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent. In addition, the appeals court also reversed the felony charge of trying to elude law enforcement. But Powell’s convictions of attempted murder and assault on a peace officer stand. That attempted murder charge carried a 25-year prison sentence.