COLUMBUS — A 24-year-old Columbus man who led police on a wild chase on a stolen all-terrain vehicle last summer was sentenced Wednesday to two years in prison.
Platte County District Court Judge Robert Steinke sentenced Craig Gresham, who turns 25 on Saturday, for theft-receiving stolen property $1,500-$5,000 and operating a motor vehicle to avoid arrest in connection with the July 17 incident.
Gresham, who pleaded no contest to the charges, must spend 12 months on post-release supervision and pay $1,053 restitution. Steinke gave him credit for 68 days already served in the county jail.
In exchange for Gresham pleading no contest to the charges, the county attorney’s office dismissed two counts of criminal trespassing.
According to court documents, Gresham was arrested inside a south-central Columbus apartment building following the roughly 30-minute pursuit. The chase began near Sioux Drive and 27th Street, just north of Columbus Motor Company, when an officer attempted to stop the four-wheeler.
Gresham fled on the ATV, which was reported stolen in Columbus, driving through yards, fields and the Pawnee Plunge Water Park parking lot during the pursuit. The chase stretched from north-central to southeast Columbus and eventually the Loup River levee and Pawnee Park before Gresham abandoned the ATV and fled on foot.
He ran into an apartment building and kicked open a door in an attempt to hide from officers, according to court records, but was arrested without further incident.
Columbus Police were assisted in the chase by the Platte County Sheriff's Office, Nebraska State Patrol and Husker Helicopter, which tracked the suspect from the sky.