Semi-truck driver pulls out to stop high-speed chase

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Wednesday night around 11:00 p.m. Derek Cook, a trucker from St. Louis, stopped to get a cup of coffee from Kum and Go on Kearney St. and Delaware Ave.

Officials with the Springfield Police Department (SPD) say they were pursuing a driver at a high rate of speed.

"As I was pulling out, sitting there at the signal, waiting to make my turn, here come the bad guys," Cook said. "Being chased by the Springfield PD and State Patrol."

Cook says he did not think, he just pressed the gas pedal. He pulled out and blocked the intersection to stop the driver leading police on a chase.

"I thought I would just pull out there and put a whoa on it," Cook said.

The driver then plowed into Cook's semi. His plan panned out.

"Around about two seconds later, he hit my truck and I felt a little push," Cook said. "Then it swung him around to the curb and he waited there for two or three seconds. Then, got out there and ran."

Officials with SPD arrested and charged Malachi Okonu, 18. He was charged with multiple counts of robbery, resisting arrest among other charges. He is booked on a $50,000 bond.

Now Cook must make repairs to his truck. He estimates it will cost around $600.

"Part of his automobile hit this seal on my hub," Cook said. "It spun him around and he tore up my tire."

At the end of the day, Cook says he was glad to help.

"Police are my heroes," Cook said.