A Goodhue, MN man has been charged two felonies after attempting to run over a man and leading police on a rush-hour chase through Richfield and Bloomington, during which he caused several accidents and a fire.
Joshua Dale Vredenburg, 20, is charged with second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon, which carries a maximum penalty of seven years in prison and a $14,000 fine, and fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle, for which the maximum penalty is three years in prison and a $5,000 fine. The assault charge has a mandatory minimum penalty of a year and a day in prison and a $4,200 fine.
According to the criminal complaint, signed by Richfield Police Officer Ronald Dox, officers from Richfield and Bloomington responded to a report of an erratic driver who had caused several accidents at about 5 p.m. Oct 25 near 76th Street and 12th Avenue in Richfield.
A dispatcher was told that the man, driving a green Toyota, had driven the wrong way on an entrance ramp to westbound Interstate 494.
Officers spotted the car and as they approached it, the driver—later identified as Vredenburg—fled, according to the complaint.
Vredenburg ran two red lights before he was trapped between a school bus and other vehicles, the complaint says. Instead of stopping, he put the vehicle in reverse and crashed into a squad car behind him. He then veered to the east, went up over a curb and crashed into a concrete barrier, police said.
Vredenburg continued south along the sidewalk on the east side of 76th Street, eventually coming back out on southbound Nicollet Avenue. Officers caught up to Vredenburg’s car, which appeared to have stalled on Nicollet, but as they approached, Vredenburg fled again, the complaint charges.
Vredenburg again became trapped at a red light near 77th and Nicollet, but swung left, driving south in northbound lanes, and continued into Bloomington, at which point Bloomington officers arrived to assist in the pursuit, according to the complaint.
Officers performed a precision immobilization technique (PIT) maneuver in an attempt to stop Vredenburg, but were unsuccessful.
Vredenburg finally crashed into a home in the 9000 block of Park Avenue, shearing the cap off a gas line on the way and starting a fire, according to the complaint. Police evacuated the home while Vredenburg fled on foot; he was captured two houses away.
Police learned that Vredenburg originally had been driving a blue Honda Accord which he used to smash into another driver in Richfield. The victim was able to drive around Vredenburg, leave his car and run into a home in the 7600 block of 12th Avenue, with Vredenburg chasing him in his car through the yard, attempting to hit him, according to the complaint.
Vredenburg then got out of the Honda and into the victim’s car and tried again to hit him, chasing him around the yard, the complaint charges. When officers arrived, Vredenburg fled the scene.
Vredenburg’s criminal record includes felony convictions for first- and third-degree burglary in 2009 and car theft and fleeing police in 2010, all when he was a juvenile. He was also convicted of three counts of third-degree burglary in 2010, felony domestic assault and violating a no-contact order in 2010, and third-degree burglary in 2011, for which he remains on probation.
Vredenburg remains in the Hennepin County Jail on a $50,000 bond and a Minnesota Department of Corrections hold for the alleged probation violation.