Arrested

DeSoto County officials stated Thursday morning a man taken into custody in Osceola, Arkansas is a person the Sheriff’s Department has been seeking on sexual battery charges.

The arrest of Justin James Roby, age 36, came after an armed standoff overnight Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

Reports indicated that Roby had earlier allegedly fled from Missouri Highway Patrol officers in that state.

Arkansas authorities later spotted Roby in the Osceola vicinity, which is located south of Blytheville, and found him at a gas station on Arkansas Highway 140 in the community about 10 p.m. Wednesday night.

Authorities approached his vehicle, but he refused to get out. Officers also discovered that Roby was armed and with a woman inside the car, although it was not immediately determined if she was there willingly or being held against her will.

The woman was later released about 2 a.m. Thursday morning as officers continued to negotiate with Roby, who eventually surrendered to authorities without incident about 4 a.m.

Involved in the standoff were officers from the Arkansas State Police, Mississippi County, Ark. Sheriff’s Office, and the Osceola, Ark. Police Department.

A warrant for Roby had been issued in DeSoto County on charges of sexual battery of a minor. When he was last seen before his discovery and arrest this week, Roby was driving a 2019 Ford F-150 with Arizona license plates.

Roby is now being held in Mississippi County, Ark. awaiting extradition back to DeSoto County.

Bob Bakken is Managing Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune.

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