WESLEY G. PYATT, d/o/b 5-04-1951, of Hollister, was sentenced on Wednesday, July 30, 2014, to seven (7) years in the Missouri Department of Corrections for the class B felony of driving while intoxicated. Senior Judge Carr Woods, acting as Taney County Circuit Court Judge, sentenced Pyatt after hearing a guilty plea by the defendant pursuant to a plea agreement with the Taney County Prosecutor’s Office.

On November 22, 2010, Taney County Sheriff’s Deputy Chris Kaempfer was called to the Western Taney County Fire Station #7, on Jefferson Road, in Branson, in reference to an intoxicated man in a car blocking the garage doors of the fire station. When Kaempfer and other deputies arrived, they observed Pyatt trying to get his car started, and observed Pyatt starting the car’s engine. Because Pyatt appeared to be intoxicated, deputies stopped him and attempted to conduct field sobriety tests, which Pyatt refused. After admitting he had a suspended driver’s license, Pyatt ceased cooperating or answering any questions for Deputy Kaempfer. At the Taney County jail, Pyatt refused a breath test.

Driving while intoxicated, as a first offense, is normally a class B misdemeanor, and handled by the Associate Circuit Courts. However, because Pyatt had four or more intoxication-related traffic offenses, he was charged with a class B felony for being a “chronic” D.W.I. offender. The range of punishment for a class B felony is not less than five (5) years in prison and not more than fifteen (15) years in prison. However, Pyatt was charged as a prior and persistent felony offender, enhancing his possible maximum prison sentence to thirty (30) years. Pyatt was sentenced to seven (7) years for driving while intoxicated. Pyatt has been in jail and substance abuse treatment off-and-on since this D.W.I offense.