14-year-old leads police in high-speed chase

Published 10:35 am Monday, August 4, 2008

A high-speed chase through residential and rural regions of Austin led to the arrest of a 14-year-old Hinckley teen, who’d allegedly taken local and county authorities through 7.5 miles of road at top speeds of 50 to 100 mph before his apprehension, according to Austin Police Lt. John Mueller.

Mueller said police received an “attempt to locate” directive from dispatch, which said the teen had been seen in the area. An officer noticed the young man peeling out of the parking lot at Taco John’s on Oakland Avenue West in a 1988 Chevy pickup, which allegedly had been taken from Crow Wing County, Mueller stated.

After a chase through northwest neighborhoods, the 14-year-old was followed to the Highway 218 North overpass, where he avoided stop sticks before continuing to the highway.

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He eventually entered the northbound ditch near County Highway 2 in efforts to avoid another set of stop sticks on Highway 218, Mueller stated. He entered a field, and was followed until his return to County 2, where he stopped after the engine of the vehicle started on fire.

Mueller said authorities believed the suspect would run, so ordered police dog Tazer to apprehend him. The teen was taken to Austin Medical Center for bites incurred during the arrest, he said.

Charges may include reckless driving, felony fleeing a police officer and possession of stolen property, according to Mueller, who said the matter has been forwarded to the Mower County Attorney’s Office.