An extended high-speed car chase between police and the driver of a stolen cement truck in Dodge County, Minnesota, ended Sunday afternoon with the arrest of the driver, an 11-year-old boy, according to a report from CBS Local Minnesota. The pursuit started around 3 p.m. and lasted for 72 minutes as police attempted to stop the runaway cement truck, reaching speeds of 65-70 miles per hour, and required the use of a State Patrol helicopter to keep track of the truck.
According to Kare 11 News, Dodge Center resident Troy Flatness witnessed the chase and recounted what he had seen.
“I betcha he drove around town 6 or 7 different times. He was smiling, hooting and hollering…he was having a good time.”
The chase started in Dodge Center after the Minnesota State Patrol attempted to stop the 11-year-old on Highway 14 for speeding; shortly thereafter, they reported that they were in pursuit of a suspect and ended pursuit after a State Patrol car was struck by the cement truck and damaged.
Deputies from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office and officers with the Kasson Police Department were called in, who then attempted to halt the cement truck with stop sticks, tire deflation devices placed in the road. Several attempts were made to stop the cement truck but at 3:14 p.m. the 11-year-old driver struck a set of stop sticks, punctured his right front tire and proceeded to leave Dodge Center for rural roads near Kasson, reaching highway speeds in spite of the damage.
At some point, the truck managed to get back onto Highway 14 heading back toward Dodge Center, which later turned out to be the boy’s home town, according to witnesses.
For the juvenile delinquent, all good things must come to an end. Pursuit of the cement truck backed off partially because, at some point, the tire which had struck the stop stick began smoking and detached from the truck, leaving only one front tire intact. When the boy got back to Dodge Center, he finally stopped his vehicle in a cul-de-sac and fled on foot, likely hoping to avoid arrest. But police caught up with him and arrested him without further incident. He is currently being held at the Juvenile Detention Center in Rochester, pending a court appearance and charges.
The cement mixer, which was allegedly new, sustained heavy damage. While police would not confirm how the boy got it, it was believed to have been taken from a construction site. Sheriff Scott Rose took the opportunity to remind locals not to leave their vehicles unattended with the keys, “regardless of size.”
During the chase, residents of Dodge Center (population 2,700) lined the streets to watch, shouting out whenever they saw him coming. Probably not the best idea, given that he sideswiped several other vehicles during the pursuit, littering the street with debris and broken glass.
“Everybody was out with their cameras,” said Troy Flatness. “It was like a parade and I had no idea what was going on.”
[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]