Sheriff’s Office Asks for Information on Person Who Filmed Fatal Pursuit

CENTRAL CITY –  A local sheriff’s office is asking for help locating someone, who was potentially taking video of a police pursuit that turned into a fatal accident.

The Merrick County Sheriff’s Office says they received information that someone between the 2000 and 2200 block of Highway 14, was potentially taking video of a police pursuit with an SUV, that took place on December 22nd. The sheriff’s office says the person is not in any trouble, but says they would like their assistance.

The MCSO asked anyone with information on who the person may be to contact Merrick County Sheriff John Westman at 308-946-2345.

On December 22nd, a pursuit that started in Central City, turned fatal when the driver avoiding authorities crashed outside Osceola.


OSCEOLA – The Nebraska State Patrol (NSP) is investigating a fatality accident that happened following a pursuit involving the Merrick County Sheriff’s Office.

The incident occurred at approximately 10:00 p.m. on Friday, December 22. Shortly before that time, the Merrick County Sheriff’s Office began pursuit of a 2005 Dodge Durango after it failed to stop for a traffic violation in Central City.

The vehicle crashed just west of Osceola, in Polk County, and rolled, ejecting both parties who were inside.

Autumn Stadley, 25, of Omaha, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Luis J. Elias, 26, of Omaha, was transported by ambulance to the Osceola Hospital, then by helicopter to Bryan Health West in Lincoln with severe injuries.

NSP is investigating the crash and trying to determine who was driving at the time of the crash.

The Durango was determined to have been stolen from Iowa.

Under Nebraska law, a grand jury is convened following an in-custody death or a death that occurs during the course of apprehension.