Skip to main content

5 people charged in PedalPub water balloon attack

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Five people accused of throwing water balloons and shooting squirt guns at several PedalPub riders in downtown Minneapolis Saturday evening have been charged with various misdemeanor crimes in Hennepin County court, the Star Tribune reports.

They, along with a sixth person who was arrested but not charged, approached two PedalPubs on bicycles, sprayed the passengers and drivers with water from squirt guns and threw water balloons at them, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

They approached a third PedalPub, which happened to be occupied by several off-duty police officers from Burnsville. Those officers chased them down and subdued them until Minneapolis police arrived.

Those charged were Francis W. Bellanger, 26, of Minneapolis; Jason L. Carlton, 42, of Minneapolis; Mark W. Dean, 31, of St. Paul; Kurtis W. Johnson, 31, of Inver Grove Heights; and John D. Rock Jr., 24, of Shakopee., according to the Pioneer Press.

Rock is charged with fifth-degree assault and disorderly conduct, Johnson with fifth-degree assault, and the other three with disorderly conduct.

The water attack was planned ahead of time on Facebook, with the participants meeting at Loring Park for a “bicycle raid on the pedal pub with squirt guns and a ton of water balloons.”

This video posted to YouTube shows the tail end of the incident, where the Burnsville officers are subduing the suspects; many commenters called the water attacks harmless, and said the officers overreacted.

This embed is invalid

Burnsville Police Chief Eric Gieseke said he's asked Minneapolis police to review the incident, according to the Pioneer Press.

The Facebook group called I Hate the Pedal Pub responded to this incident with a post saying in part: “I have received a few messages that some people have pursued pedal pubs today with squirt guns and water balloons. Wrong idea guys. Although getting wet is mostly harmless, it is still considered assault.”

The Star Tribune asks, only half-jokingly, why people seem to hate Pedal Pubs, and came up with a number of reasons: The riders can be noisy after they've had a few drinks; the vehicles move slowly and can get in the way of traffic; and the passengers sometimes "leave unwelcome bodily fluids in their wake."

Social media is also fueling some of the disdain, the newspaper notes, with the aforementioned I Hate Pedal Pubs Facebook page as a prominent example of that.

Indeed, Twitter was full of snarky comments about the water "attacks" and the arrests over the past few days. Here's a sample:

Next Up

Anthony Edwards

Ant ejected, Wolves blow huge lead and lose to slumping Hawks

The Timberwolves missed another opportunity to get over .500.

Xcel Energy Center

NHL announces make-up dates for Wild postponements

The Wild will play 40 games in the final 77 days of the regular season.

the mayo clinic - edit

Group says Mayo should be 'severely punished' over research puppy's death

The puppy died two days after undergoing a procedure at a Mayo research facility.

FLickr - minneapolis police - Tony Webster - Feb 2020 - crop

Charges: Man kidnapped woman, sexually assaulted her at gunpoint

The suspect faces three separate felony charges.

mn state capitol january 17 2021

St. Cloud 'Boogaloo Boi' who discussed attack on MN Capitol gets 2 years

He was charged with illegally possessing a machine gun.

Chris Smith

Gophers add All-Ivy League D-tackle from Harvard

Chris Smith will be eligible immediately as a graduate transfer.

school bus

High school basketball team returns from game to find bus driver dead

Members of the girls team returned to the bus to find the driver unresponsive.

covid-19 testing site sign

Minnesota AG sues COVID testing site, alleging it sent false results

Sometimes the company didn't send people their results at all, the lawsuit alleges.

optum headquarters chad davis wikimedia commons

UnitedHealth Group says it made $287B last year, $24B of it profit

The corporation's Optum business represented a significant chunk of that total.


Omicron may have already peaked in Minnesota

Reported cases lag what's happening in real time, so the newly reported cases over the next week or so will still be very high.

MnDot snow plow cam I-35 12-10-21

MnDOT reveals 50 snowplow name finalists

Voting is open through Wednesday, Jan. 26.