Teen charged with crashing stolen front-end loader into car dealership


Charges against a teenager say he stole a front-end loader from a processing plant in the middle of the night, then drove it on the railroad tracks and through the street, before plowing into the front of a car dealership at the request of a couple wannabe car thieves.

The 16-year-old was charged with two felonies – motor vehicle theft and criminal property damage – in connection with the March incident.

The trip, in a car and on roads, is about 20 miles.

(Note: It is BringMeTheNews' policy not to name juveniles charged as minors.)

According to the juvenile petition, the teen took the front loader tractor from Strategic Materials between about midnight and 5 a.m. on March 14, after crawling under a security gate.

The charges continue:

The teenager climbed in to the loader, didn't need keys to start it, and drove over a security fence to get out, he told investigators.

From there he traveled along railroad tracks, before taking a trail to a paved street, where he stuck to the side of the road and drove slowly with his hazards on.

In Hopkins, he came across two juveniles outside of Metro Motor Cars – one asked the teen to break into the building so they could steal a car.

The teen then drove into the front of the car dealership, allowing the two juveniles to take keys and a car.

The teen then didn't know what to do, so waited in the dealership.

When Hopkins police arrived just before 5 a.m. on an alarm call, they saw a white male in the building and ordered him out – but he wouldn't respond. They went in with guns drawn and found the teenager with cuts to his abdomen – he said a canine bit him.

The damage to Strategic Materials only was estimated at nearly $5,000.

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