GREENWOOD, Mo. — Authorities have identified a man who drowned after he drove into a southwest Missouri creek while fleeing from officers.

Newton County Sheriff Chris Jennings says officers began pursuing 43-year-old Matthew Putnam Monday afternoon in Seneca after he refused to stop.

The Joplin Globe reports a 34-minute pursuit ended when Putnam drove into Shoal Creek southwest of Joplin.

Jennings says an officer ordered Putnam to come out of the creek but he told the officer “no.” Officers later heard him yell for help and saw him go under water.

Divers recovered his body a short time later.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol is conducting an investigation of the death.

Information from: The Joplin (Mo.) Globe,

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