SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A Kansas City, Mo., man who fired an assault rifle at law enforcement officers before leading officers on high-speed pursuits in three different vehicles was indicted by a federal grand jury today for illegally possessing firearms and methamphetamine.
Brenton Ross, 32, was charged in a three-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield.
Today’s indictment charges Ross with one count of possessing methamphetamine to distribute, one count of discharging a firearm during a drug-trafficking offense, and one count of being a felon in possession of firearms.
Ross was arrested on Oct. 15, 2022, after being pursued in several different vehicles and shooting at law enforcement officers.
Ross allegedly was driving a white 2021 Dodge Challenger with California license plates when a Barton County, Mo., sheriff’s deputy attempted to stop him for leaving the scene of an accident that occurred in Vernon County, Mo. Ross fled at speeds exceeding 130 miles per hour before stopping his vehicle on Interstate 49 in Vernon County. Ross allegedly fired multiple shots at the sheriff’s deputy with a Great Lakes Firearm & Ammunition .223-caliber rifle, hitting the deputy’s vehicle several times. Ross then fled on foot.
Law enforcement officers in Vernon County later attempted again to stop Ross, who was driving a stolen Chevrolet Suburban. Officers pursued Ross at speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour in a construction zone until he drove off-road and evaded capture.
Ross led officers on another high-speed chase later the same day, while driving a stolen flatbed pickup truck. Ross allegedly drove the truck into law enforcement vehicles. The Missouri State Highway Patrol’s air unit followed Ross as he fled on foot until he was apprehended by law enforcement.
Officers searched the Challenger and found a stolen Smith & Wesson 9mm semi-automatic pistol, multiple spent .223-caliber rifle shells, and methamphetamine. Officers found the assault rifle near another vehicle used by Ross during the pursuit.
Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who is convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Ross has two prior felony convictions for stealing a motor vehicle and two prior felony convictions for tampering with a motor vehicle, as well as prior felony convictions for possessing an illegal weapon, possessing a controlled substance, property damage, statutory rape, assault on a law enforcement officer, resisting arrest, and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Ross was on supervision with the Missouri Board of Probation & Parole at the time of this incident.
The charges contained in this indictment are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony M. Brown. It was investigated by the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Barton County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Vernon County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Cedar County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, and the Vernon County, Mo., Prosecuting Attorney.
Project Safe Neighborhoods
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.