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Man charged in theft of snowmobiles, trailer

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Aaron Michael Anderson, Olmsted District Court

A Mazeppa man will make his initial appearance today in Olmsted County District Court, where he's been charged with multiple felonies after allegedly stealing a pair of snowmobiles on a trailer.

Aaron Michael Anderson, 36, faces two counts of motor vehicle theft; two counts of possession of stolen property; and one count each of second-degree controlled substance crime-possession and possession of an electronic incapacitation device as an ineligible person.

He remains in custody in lieu of $200,000 conditional bond.

The investigation began about 2:45 a.m. Dec. 10, when deputies were sent to New Haven Township for a report of a theft. In the ditch at the scene, he found a car and a trailer carrying two snowmobiles; a four-wheeler was nearby.

A man told the officer he'd heard an engine running outside his home, looked out a window and saw a four-wheeler hooked to his son's snowmobile trailer. Before he could get outside, the suspect — later identified as Anderson — took off down Douglas Trail with the trailer, the complaint says.

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The man's daughter said she woke up to her father yelling, then "went after the person, caught up to the suspect and began honking her horn," court documents say. The four-wheeler didn't slow down and was swerving all over the road, the document continues, as the woman followed it down the Douglas Trail.

The woman's vehicle and the four-wheeler eventually collided and ended up in the ditch.

Anderson allegedly told the woman he wasn't stealing the snowmobiles, then said he was getting paid $50 to steal them, but wouldn't say who paid him.

The man's son arrived at the scene, verified the items belonged to him and said he hadn't given anyone permission to take them or ride them, the reports say. The snowmobiles and trailer carry an approximate value of $15,000.

Anderson, who claimed to be injured in the collision, was taken first to the hospital, then to jail. He was searched, which allegedly resulted in the discovery of $960 in cash, a total of 35.2 grams of methamphetamine and two stun guns.

According to the complaint, Anderson told a deputy that he was picking up the snowmobiles for a friend, but didn't want to identify him. Later referring to the friend as "Jeremy," Anderson claimed Jeremy said he'd pay him $50 to get some snowmobiles back from an ex-girlfriend.

Jeremy also let him use the four-wheeler, Anderson said, adding that he thought it was probably stolen because it was nice and likely cost more than Jeremy could afford, the court document says.

The four-wheeler was confirmed stolen, but not from anyone named Jeremy.

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Anderson said he didn't know anything about the meth found in his jacket, the report says, and had no idea it was there.

A review of his criminal history indicates at least 10 convictions for felony theft, including at least seven incidents of motor vehicle theft.

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