Rochester man accused of gas drive-off

By Janice Gregorson

Post-Bulletin, Rochester MN

Not paying for gas might end up costing a Rochester man much more than the price of a fill-up.

The 18-year-old man now is in custody and could face felony charges of being in possession of stolen property and fleeing a peace officer, in addition to the misdemeanor charges stemming from the gas drive-off.

Police allege that he led them on a chase that ended when officers used stop sticks to flatten the tires of his fleeing vehicle. He was arrested after he ran from police.


Police Lt. Dan Muyres said it happened about 5 a.m. Wednesday. Rochester police had received an alert about a gas drive-off in Cannon Falls. After running the license plate of the vehicle, Goodhue County authorities learned it had been reported stolen out of Rochester.

Muyres said police suspected the vehicle might be southbound on U.S. 52. A squad car was stationed on the outskirts of Rochester along the highway.

The driver turned off U.S. 52, going west on 55th Street Northwest, then went north on Chateau Drive and circled back onto 55th Street. It was then that the officer activated his lights to get the car to stop. Meanwhile, a second officer was now in place along the highway frontage road where he had placed the stop sticks. The suspect car then turned onto the frontage road and into the path of the nails of the stop sticks. Muyres said the suspect kept driving about a mile before the car stopped in the 3600 block of West Frontage Road. The driver jumped and ran, but was caught by the pursuing officer.

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