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Norwell senior jailed after alleged threat

October 25, 2011

    A rural Craigville youth who is a senior at Norwell High School was jailed last Friday as the result of alleged incidents at Norwell the day before. The incidents included a police chase that attained speeds of over 100 mph in Wells County and ended with a taser device being used on the suspect.
    Jonathon Stickney, 18, was lodged in the Wells County Jail under $11,000 bond on charges of intimidation, resisting law enforcement, and operating a vehicle recklessly.
    The Bluffton News-Banner reported that Stickney was in Norwell's office for disciplinary action when he allegedly threatened school personnel, who then told him to leave the building.
    According to reports, Stickney allegedly said he would return to school to seek retaliation against the Norwell staff.
    He reportedly drove to his grandmother's home and got a small sledgehammer.
    Meanwhile, two Wells County deputy sheriffs arrived at Norwell after school officials asked for assistance and the school was locked down.
    Wells County Sheriff Monte Fisher also came to the school and, while he was there, the police saw Stickney drive by, so Fisher and a third deputy, Dave Johnson, began chasing Stickney's truck.
    Johnson told the Bluffton newspaper, "He refused to stop. He fled from the Norwell area and tried to elude us," including driving past several stop signs.
    The chase reached speeds of more than 100 mph on rural roads. The News-Banner said Sheriff Fisher drove his squad car in front of the speeding truck on State Rd. 301 as he and Johnson tried to box Stickney in and slow the truck down.
    Stickney allegedly rammed Fisher's car a few times and then passed the sheriff, but lost control on the wet road. The truck sideswiped Fisher's car and went off 301 into a muddy field.
    By this time, Fisher had four deputy sheriffs with him and the five men surrounded the stuck truck. Johnson told the newspaper later, "We gave him loud and clear verbal commands to exit the vehicle. He refused, so we broke the driver's side window and removed him from the vehicle. He continued to resist us and we continued to give him loud verbal commands to get down on the ground and stop resisting."
    Finally, the burly Stickney was reportedly knocked down with a taser device, handcuffed, and taken to jail.
    The police reported that the cab of the truck contained not only the hammer, but also a full five-gallon can of gasoline and two books of matches. The police alleged that Stickney may have been planning to start a fire at the high school.
    Combined damage estimates for Stickney's truck and the sheriff's car were $5,000 to $10,000.

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