UPDATE: The Star Tribune is reporting that people who know the boy involved say he's only 11 years old. This age seems incredible when one watches the video below, and hears the wild description of what he allegedly did. But one witness told the Star Tribune that the boy she saw driving yesterday was tall, but actually "looks a lot younger than 11." Read our original story below.
As escape vehicles go, you could do better than a cement mixer. Say, something with a bit more get-up-and-go when you're trying to lose the cops on your tail.
Then again, you could do worse. After all, who's going to try to stop the motion of a 10-ton truck? And how would they even try?
Some of this reasoning might have been involved in the thinking — if that's the right word — of a Minnesota juvenile who stole a cement mixer yesterday and went for a Sunday joyride. Police and the Minnesota State Patrol did not think this was such a fun idea.
They chased the kid from his point of order in Dodge Center, through Kasson (five miles away), Byron (another six miles), then back to Dodge Center (12 more miles, for a total round trip of 23 miles), where he was finally caught and placed in custody, the Rochester Post-Bulletin reports.
During his last stretch driving in the town of Dodge Center, the youth in the truck came barreling down the street in front of Dustin Johnson, who captured the moment on his cell phone camera. Johnson describes the cement mixer as already having blown a tire and "riding on the rim" at that point.
The tire was blown out by police-lain "stop sticks," which didn't quite live up to their name in this chase.
The right front tire can be heard rattling in this video; later, it was observed smoking, and the Post-Bulletin says the kid did significant damage to some roads in town.
Note: At this point in the chase, authorities had stopped close pursuit of the youngster, for the safety of other drivers. Instead, his progress was being monitored by a State Patrol helicopter overhead.
"Some GTA stuff," Johnson writes, referring to the video game Grand Theft Auto. It's a good point, though in the game, when your stolen cement truck is breaking down, you just hop out and steal another one. In real life, when you jump out and run, you get caught and hauled off to the Rochester Juvenile Detention Center.
The boy's name and age have not been released, but he is expected to be arraigned in court today.
The Dodge County Sheriff's Office used the wild occasion to remind people not to leave their keys in their vehicles unattended. We would add to this: especially if your vehicle is a cement mixer.