Teens charged with vehicle theft

Published 6:46 am Thursday, March 11, 2010

Three area teenagers were arrested Monday night when two stolen vehicles they were driving were recovered in Austin.

The male teenagers — ages 13, 15 and 15 — were all taken to Many Rivers Juvenile Detention Center in Rochester. They were charged in Mower County court Tuesday with multiple counts of motor vehicle theft and fleeing from a police officer. Given their ages, the court files are not public documents.

According to a police report, Austin authorities were notified by Worthington police that a stolen car was en route to Austin at around 10:25 p.m. Monday.

Officers spotted the vehicle on Interstate Highway 90 at the west end of town, then proceeded to chase the vehicle through the nearby residential area, reaching speeds upwards of 50 mph. Eventually, the car came to a stop at a dead end on Second Street Southwest near Fourth Avenue. The driver, 13, allegedly tried to flee, but the sheriff’s department K-9, Tazer, apprehended him.

At around the same time, a second vehicle entered the area. Police were notified that it too was reported stolen, and that driver sped away, the report states. Austin police Lt. John Mueller said the drivers of both vehicles had been in contact via cell phone, though it was unclear what they were talking about.

The second vehicle was later found abandoned and running downtown. The driver and a passenger, both 15, were later found and apprehended without trouble near the Austin Medical Center, the report states. The report also states that the 15-year-old driver claimed he didn’t know the vehicle, a Chevrolet Blazer, was stolen.

The other vehicle, a Chevrolet Malibu, was reportedly stolen from in front of a downtown Austin business Friday. It was running and unlocked at the time, the complaint states. It is unclear specifically when the Blazer, which was housed in Worthington, was stolen. It is also unclear why the vehicles were coming from Worthington on Monday and whether the two thefts were related.