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Batesville man arrested after pursuit in vehicle stolen from local dealership

A Batesville man was arrested Feb. 5 after a short pursuit on State Highway 69 in a vehicle police say was stolen from a Lawrence Street used car dealership.

The dealership alerted Batesville Police that a 2006 blue Jeep Liberty was missing after it had been started to allow the battery to charge on Feb. 5. When a staff member went back to remove the keys and secure the vehicle, it was gone, according to court documents filed Monday morning in Independence County Circuit Court.

Later that day, Batesville Police were alerted that the Independence County Sheriff’s Department was in pursuit of the Liberty that eventually ended when the driver, identified in the arrest affidavit as Ian Matthew Fuller (pictured), 21, stopped and exited the vehicle at the end of Morrow Street after the pursuit.

Fuller was taken to the Independence County Detention Center where on Feb. 6, he was interviewed by BPD Investigator Freddie Friar. Fuller allegedly told Friar that on the afternoon of Feb. 5, a relative arrived at a residence in which Fuller was staying and told Fuller he had “just stolen a vehicle,” the arrest affidavit said.

The affidavit noted that Fuller told Friar that he went outside to look at the vehicle and then removed the spare tire mounted on the rear of the Liberty. When Friar asked why he removed the tire, Fuller told him he took it off to make the vehicle look different so his relative would not go to prison, the affidavit said.

Fuller is charged with two felony counts: tampering with physical evidence, a Class D felony, and theft by receiving, a Class C felony. His bond was set at $15,000.

Image via Independence County Sheriff’s Department

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