Webb City man bound over for trial in alleged gun-displaying incident

Apr. 19—The preliminary hearing Thursday of a 30-year-old Webb City man accused of threatening others with a handgun ended with the defendant bound over for trial on four felony counts.

Judge Joseph Hensley decided at the conclusion of the hearing in Jasper County Circuit Court that there is sufficient reason for Tyretha D. Smith III to stand trial on two felony counts of unlawful use of a weapon and single counts of unlawful possession of a firearm and delivery of a controlled substance. Smith also faces misdemeanor counts of resisting arrest and possession of a defaced firearm in the case.

The charges pertain to Smith's arrest March 11 after an incident on South Hall Street in Webb City during which he allegedly threatened several workers in the area with a handgun.

One of the workers, Myron Sanchez, testified that he saw Smith pushing and kicking a woman outside his home and yelled at him to stop. Smith began shouting back at him to shut up and mind his own business, Sanchez said.

He said Smith came over to them a short time later brandishing a gun in their direction. Smith eventually walked away without firing any shots, but police were called to the scene and obtained a search warrant on his home, where he had gone inside following the confrontation.

A Webb City police officer testified that the search turned up a scale with some powder residue on it, some meth pipes, a 9 mm round found on a bedroom floor and a 9 mm pistol retrieved from inside an air vent in the bedroom. Police also discovered a bag in a purse left in the living room that contained about 26.5 grams of suspected methamphetamine, according to another officer's testimony and the probable-cause affidavit filed in the case.

Jeff Lehr is a reporter for The Joplin Globe.