Fugitive jailed after Foy’s Lake area chase

December 15, 2018

A man who was on the Montana Department of Corrections’ most-wanted fugitives list earlier this fall is now sitting in the Flathead County Jail after he led law enforcement officers on a chase Monday west of Kalispell.

Robert Roy Stokes, 35, is facing three charges, including a felony count of theft, after police said he stole a truck from a Plains business early on the morning of Dec. 10.

According to the affidavit of probable cause, at about 5:45 a.m. Monday, Dec. 10, several Flathead County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the Foy’s Lake area for a suspicious vehicle that was described as a white Rail Link pickup truck. The driver of the vehicle was reportedly wearing a full face mask.

When one of the deputies approached the area, he saw the pickup driving in the opposite direction. When another deputy tried to stop the truck, it sped away on Foy’s Lake Road, Whalebone Drive and Smith Lake Road.

Officers used spike strips to disable the truck’s tires on Browns Meadow Road, where both people jumped out and ran.

Officers chased both people and found the driver lying on the ground with his hands tucked under his body. When the driver wouldn’t show officers his hands, they arrested him.

According to the complaint, Stokes was a wearing a full face mask, headlamp and latex gloves. The pickup, valued at $30,000, had been reported stolen by Montana Rail Link from its section house in Plains.

It is not Stokes’ first time being in trouble in Northwest Montana. According to a 2014 account in the Lake County Leader, he led Montana Highway Patrol, Ronan police, Flathead tribal police, Lake and Sanders county sheriff’s departments on a high-speed chase before “stop sticks” were used to end it.

Stokes also pleaded guilty to criminal endangerment after he held a gun to the head of a woman during an incident in January 2014.

Stokes’ arraignment is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019. He faces a maximum of 10 years in the Montana State Prison on the felony charge.

Reporter Scott Shindledecker may be reached at 406-758-4441 or sshindledecker@dailyinterlake.com.

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