On Jan. 7 the Merrick County Sheriff’s Department and the Central City Police Department arrested two Kearney men between Central City and Chapman.

At about 7:40 p.m., the Merrick County K9 Unit was conducting a follow-up investigation at the Pump & Pantry gas station in Chapman. The deputy observed two suspicious men associated with a vehicle idling outside of the gas station. A records check of the license plate showed the plate on the vehicle was fictitious.

After the vehicle left the gas station, a traffic stop was conducted on the car near 13th Road and Highway 30. As the deputy approached the vehicle to make contact with the occupants, he observed a shotgun near the front-seat passenger. The deputy, along with an officer with the Central City Police Department who came as emergency backup, was able to detain both occupants of the vehicle without incident. K9 Shadow was deployed and reacted to the presence of narcotics in the vehicle. A search of the vehicle uncovered a sawed-off shotgun, multiple concealed knives, concentrated cannabis and drug paraphernalia. Both occupants were arrested and transported to Merrick County Corrections.

Tyler Tockey was arrested for possession of a deadly weapon during commission of a felony, possession of a short shotgun, tampering with physical evidence, carrying a concealed weapon, having no proof of insurance, third-offense possession of less than an ounce of marijuana, no valid registration and possession of drug paraphernalia.

James Howell was booked on tampering with physical evidence, third-offense possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana, driving under revocation, fictitious plates and possession of drug paraphernalia.

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