Boater arrested after lake chase with infant on board


A man is in custody and facing felony charges after he was involved in what KARE called a "high speed water chase" on Lake Minnetonka.

The chase started when the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a domestic incident on a boat just before 9 p.m on Friday. When they arrived, they ordered the man to stop his boat. KSTP reports the 33-year-old suspect had an infant with him when he fled in his 17-foot runabout, taking off across the lake, full of Fourth of July boaters. No-wake restrictions remain in place on Lake Minnetonka.

The water patrol boat followed him for about five minutes, until they reached Maxwell’s Bay, when two additional water patrol boats responded. FOX 9 reported that the suspect stopped his boat there. Deputies boarded the watercraft and took the man into custody.

WCCO talked to Doug Ellefson, who lives on Lake Minnetonka and witnessed the chase, which lasted about five minutes. Ellefson made three recordings on his cell phone as the boat traveled at what he estimated was 30-40 miles per hour.

“He raced by us with two sheriff boats chasing him. It’s certainly something we don’t see every day,” Ellefson said. He worried about the danger of the chase on the crowded late, especially when the family spotted the baby on the fleeing boat.

“With that amount of craziness, and a little baby involved, it was frightening,” Ellefson said.

The Sheriff’s Office is investigating the incident.

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