JONESBURG, Mo. – It was a role reversal in Jonesburg, Missouri when a 16-year-old boy came to the aid of a police officer struggling to make an arrest. The cop is calling the teen a hero.
It all began at a local convenience store and it could have been so much more dangerous. Fortunately, Gunner Sexton and two others dropped what they were doing to keep an officer from getting hurt or worse.
“As I entered, this person didn’t look like he was doing so well, had a hypodermic needle in his pocket,” Officer Len Sylcox said.
Officer Sylcox was responding to a 911 call when he discovered a man, apparently on heroin, who was about to drive away in his car.
“As we approached him at his car, he said, ‘I’m not going to jail today’ and took off running,” Sylcox said.
The officer chased the man and tackled the suspect in a muddy field near Interstate 70.
“I grabbed him by the shirt and yanked him down and as I yanked him downwards, my feet slipped out from under me; I actually pulled him on top of me,” Sylcox said.
That’s when Sexton and two adult males came to the officer’s rescue. The suspect could face a number of charges.
“We all helped. It was combined effort getting the guy off of him,” Sexton said.
Sexton, who plays high school football, baseball, and track, stands 6’5” tall and weighs 235 pounds. He said his talents and size made his impromptu police work a little less challenging.
“I really didn’t do too much,” he said. “I thought it was necessary to help because he was in need.”
Officer Sylcox said Jonesburg is made up people who support police, like Gunner.
“They’re heroic. It’s awesome. It’s heroic for people to come out and help the police,” Sylcox said.
Sexton lives by a message he learned at high school: “Do the right thing when no one’s looking. That’s what my football coach always preaches.”