Independence man sentenced to 13 years for drugs, carjacking, illegal firearms – KSHB 41 Kansas City News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — An Independence man was sentenced to 13 years in federal prison without parole for distributing methamphetamine, carjacking and illegally possessing firearms after leading officers on three high-speed vehicle pursuits.
Charles V. Bai, 29, pleaded guilty on Oct. 13, 2021, to “one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, one count of willfully damaging federal property, two counts of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime, one count of carjacking and one count of brandishing of a firearm in connection with a crime of violence,” according to a release from the U.S. Department of Justice.
During March 2020, Bai led federal agents and Independence Police Department officers on high-speed pursuits on two separate days.
“On March 8, 2020, Bai fired three shots at a motorist on Highway 24 in Independence, Mo., during a road rage incident,” the release said. “The victim reported that Bai, driving a stolen Toyota 4Runner, pulled up beside the driver’s side of his/her truck, brandished a black handgun with an extended magazine, and fired three shots at him/her, striking the victim’s vehicle with all three rounds.”
Then, on March 11, U.S. Marshals Service agents attempted to apprehend Bai with a felony arrest warrant, but Bai, who was still driving the stole Toyota, struck an agent’s vehicle and eluded capture after a brief pursuit “was terminated due to Bai traveling at excessive speeds.”
On March 17, Independence police spotted the stolen car parked in a garage at Bai’s residence and recognized the car as the same one driven during the previous high-speed chase.
When Bai left his residence, officers attempted to stop him, but he fled and a pursuit started.
“The pursuit continued for several minutes at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour as Bai drove erratically, putting numerous motorists at risk, through Independence,” the release said. “The pursuit ended on Blue Ridge Cutoff at Interstate 70 after Bai’s vehicle was involved in a single car accident, rendering the vehicle inoperable. Bai fled on foot but was apprehended by officers.”
While Bai was apprehended, officers received an emergency call about a gun lying in the road outside the center lane on eastbound I-70, west of Noland Road.
An officer recovered the gun, a Ruger 9mm pistol with an extended magazine, and found approximately 26 bullets spread across I-70.
When officers searched the stolen Toyota, they found four handgun magazine, 24 rounds of 9mm ammunition and a handgun holster.
“Investigators also found Facebook messages from Bai offering the pistol for sale,” the release said. “Bai told investigators after his arrest that he conspired with others to distribute methamphetamine. The conspiracy, which lasted from June 2019 to August 2020, distributed more than 15 kilograms of methamphetamine.”
On July 14, 2020, Bai, along with two other co-defendants, carjacked a 2018 Chevrolet Camaro. His co-defendants were 33-year-old Destiny J. White and 31-year-old Kerri J. Seaboldt.
White met the victim of the carjacking and rode with him in the Camaro as Seaboldt followed in another vehicle. White then directed the victim into an alley and met Seaboldt. White told the victim they were picking up Seaboldt because of an argument with her boyfriend, which Bai pretended to be.
Bai, on the phone, pretended to argue with Seaboldt, and White and the victim waited for the argument to finish. Bai then entered the alley with a semi-automatic handgun with an extended magazine and pointed it at the victim ordering him to get out of the Camaro and leave his personal belongings.
“Bai then got into the driver’s seat and drove away,” the release said. “Bai later fled from officers in the stolen vehicle, which he ultimately wrecked, then fled on foot. Officers were unable to apprehend Bai at that time.”
Both White and Seaboldt have pleaded guilty for their roles in the incident and are awaiting sentencing.
Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department officers then stopped Bai on Aug. 19, 2020. Bai was driving a 2006 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, but he was unable to provide a driver’s license or proof of insurance.
The license plate of the car was registered to another vehicle.
“Bai was issued a municipal summons and released,” the release said. “Officers prepared to have the car towed, but found a loaded Smith & Wesson .40-caliber semi-automatic pistol in the driver’s side door panel (in a cavity where a speaker had been removed). Officers determined the pistol had been stolen.”
KCPD officer then found Bai, who was driving another car, and arrested him. They found a bag of 3.6 grams of methamphetamine in his front pants pocket, and he had been holding a box that had items associated with drug distribution in it.
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