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Midnight pursuit involves several law enforcement jurisdictions

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Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

At 12:39 a.m. Friday, a resident of the 1200 block of Miles Avenue Southeast reported the theft of his 1994 green Mercury Villager van from his driveway.

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He told Bemidji Police officers that a relative who also lives at the residence woke him up knocking on the door. The woman said she lost her keys and went up to her room, according to the police report. The caller said he went outside to look for the keys and found his van missing. Later, the woman left on foot, the report states.

Dispatch circulated the description of the van and an officer discovered it parked in the lot by Voyageurs Expeditionary High School with a man at the wheel. The officer signaled the man in the driver's seat, but the driver took off on Bemidji Avenue North, according to the report. The officer activated a siren and lights, but the driver of the van went through a stop light and west on Paul Bunyan Drive Northwest, turning north on Irvine Avenue Northwest, the report states.

Other police officers and Beltrami County Sheriff's deputies joined the pursuit as the driver continued north on Irvine in the wrong lane and at speeds in excess of 90 mph, according to the report. Deputies deployed stop sticks, but the driver continued.

At Beltrami County Road 32, a Blackduck Police officer joined the chase and set up stop sticks, which deflated the van's tires.

The suspect stopped the vehicle and ran off into the woods, with officers in pursuit, according to the report. A deputy stopped the suspect, arrested him and brought him back to the squad car. However, the suspect escaped through the squad car window and ran off again, the report states.

Another deputy caught him and successfully brought him in for booking at the Beltrami County Jail.

Charges of fleeing a peace officer are pending.

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