John Curtis Mills (mug shot SCSO)

An alleged verbal and physical fight between a man and a woman in Stone County Sunday night led to a five-and-a-half hour stand-off between the man and sheriff's deputies at 114 James Mills Place. That is just east of Hurley

Sheriff Richard Hill says when deputies responded to the domestic assault call, John Curtis Mills, 31, who had been drinking, allegedly fired a shot toward deputies then barricaded himself in the house.

Stone County Sheriff Richard Hill

During negotiations, deputies could see Mills inside the residence holding different firearms as he talked on the phone. At one point, Mills surrendered one of the firearms for a cigarette. He told negotiators that he would shoot anyone who tried to enter the house.

Hill says negotiations with Mills, "Ran from him threatening suicide to him wanting my word that he wouldn't be shot when he came out of the house. He also wanted assurance he was not immediately going to jail."

Power was cut to the property and at about 8:30 p.m., Mills came out of the house peacefully.

Hill says he was taken to a Springfield hospital for a mental evaluation.

Stone County Prosecutor Matt Selby has filed three counts of unlawful use of a weapon, one count of exhibiting a weapon in a threatening manner and two counts of felon in possession of a firearm charges against Mills.
Selby says that Mills and the woman could also be facing domestic violence charges.


Stone County Prosecutor Matt Selby

In a totally unrelated case, Mills is mentioned in the Supreme Court of Missouri's reversal of the murder conviction of Zackary Stewart. Stewart was an 18 year-old high school senior when he was charged with first-degree murder for the November 2006 death of David Dulin of Hurley.

Stewart was convicted by a jury in Greene County, where the case was moved on a change of venue, in March of 2008 and sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.
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Zackary Lee Stewart (mug shot GCSO)

Evidence revealed at trial questioning the prosecutions evidence and DNA swayed the high court's decision.


When asked if Tim had said anything to him about a homicide, Bales, Tim's nephew, responded, “He just told me that he and [John] Mills were at the house where it happened, and that's pretty much it, that they saw it. He didn't mention any other names or anything like that.” Bales testified that Tim did not tell him anything else and he never talked to Tim about the homicide again.

Stewart was transferred back to the Greene County jail to await his new trial date which is scheduled for February 14, 2011. On August 2, Selby, and Stewart's new attorney Stacie Bilyeu, will appear in court in Neosho to argue bond reduction for Stewart as he awaits the new trial. Bileyeu has also filed a motion to dismiss the charges against Stewart.

Selby says, "I am not going to dismiss the charge. A jury found Stewart guilty and I feel confident another jury will do the same."

Electronic court records show Mills was charged with domestic assault last month. He pleaded guilty to domestic assault in April of 2009 and was serving three years probation at the time of the latest incident.

Mills is being held in the Stone County jail on $100,000 cash only bond.

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