Driver arrested in pursuit in Springfield recently released from prison for deadly pursuit

Published: Jun. 10, 2022 at 3:19 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 10, 2022 at 8:42 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - A man deputies arrested in a pursuit injuring a motorcyclist in Springfield on Thursday has a similar criminal past.

Deputies booked Sean Masten on suspicion of resisting arrest and driving with a revoked license. Investigators also suspect Masten had been under the influence of meth.

Investigators say Masten led deputies on a pursuit Thursday around 2 a.m. It started near Oak Grove Avenue and Grand Street. The pursuit reached speeds of up to 60 miles per hour. It ended after deputies say Masten hit a motorcyclist. The motorcyclist suffered cuts and bruises primarily.

Masten spent nearly seven years in prison for a high-speed pursuit and crash that killed another driver and a passenger of Masten’s. Investigators say Masten was high on methamphetamine in that crash. The state released him in 2020.

Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson said it’s hard to see him being released early.

”Very disappointing and very frustrating that someone who was supposed to be serving a sentence is out early and able to hurt someone else,” said Patterson.

Patterson said Masten has a troubling past.

“The concerning history is that in 2013, the defendant was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and sent to the Department of Corrections for 12 years,” said Patterson.

But Patterson said Masten didn’t serve that full sentence. He said the Missouri Department of Corrections made a serious mistake.

“Was supposed to serve 85% of that sentence before being released,” said Patterson. “But apparently, he was released somewhere around three years early.”

Patterson says, back in 2012, Masten blew through a stop sign at Scenic and Elm, striking 60-year-old Kathy Newman’s car, killing her.

Masten’s passenger, Joshua Sportsman, also died in the crash. Masten left the scene before police arrived. Patterson said they would figure out why Masten was released so early.

“Try to understand where that error was made there,” said Patterson. “I believe there was an error made by the Department of Corrections and releasing him early.”

Patterson hopes one day sentencing can be more consistent.

“In Missouri, it’d be nice if we move towards a day when we have truth in sentencing, and we all sort of know what someone’s going to serve.”

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