Man arrested after high-speed chase

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On May 23, at approximately 1:43 a.m., a Prairie du Chien Police officer attempted to conduct a traffic stop on a vehicle for operating left of center and failing to dim their bright head lamps. The vehicle was first observed westbound in the 100 block of West Blackhawk Avenue. The vehicle initially stopped at the intersection of South Main Street and West Iowa Street. When the officer exited his squad car to approach the vehicle, the vehicle fled from the traffic stop and preceded south on the Highway 18 Bypass.

A pursuit was initiated and the vehicle reached speeds of approximately 60 miles per hour while on the Highway 18 Bypass. The vehicle entered the Tractor Supply parking lot and a second Prairie du Chien Police squad car entered the pursuit. At this time, the vehicle made aggressive and dangerous maneuvers, causing police to take evasive action to avoid being struck by the vehicle. The pursuit continued east on Highway 18 and several “rolling roadblocks” were attempted to induce the vehicle to stop. Speeds on Highway 18 increased to approximately 80 mph. Deputies from the Crawford County Sheriff’s Department joined the pursuit in Bridgeport Township.

The pursuit continued into Grant County where several more “rolling roadblocks” were attempted by officers and deputies. Each time, the vehicle took aggressive action and forced officers and deputies to take evasive action to avoid being rammed by the vehicle.

Near the intersection of Highway 18 and Grant County Road P, “stop sticks,” a tire deflation device, was deployed by a Grant County deputy. The vehicle struck the stop sticks and was disabled approximately one mile east of the intersection of Highway 18 and County P in Grant County.

Officers arrested Donald Hinrichs, 65, Waterloo, Iowa. Charges that will be sought through the Crawford County District Attorney’s Office include: operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicants (fourth offense) and knowingly fleeing an officer. Several traffic citations were issued to Hinrichs. Those include: operating left of center, open intoxicants in a motor vehicle, operating a motor vehicle without a valid driver’s license, and speeding.

One squad car received damage to a tire during the pursuit but no injuries were reported.

“I want to commend my officers and all assisting agencies for their efforts to bring this dangerous situation to a safe conclusion. These incidents are often glamorized by coverage on television and other media. Pursuits often result in property damage or worse and through the cooperation and planning with multiple agencies, this pursuit ended with minimal property damage and no personal injuries,” said Chief Chad Abram. “In fact, a citizen who witnessed this pursuit and followed it on their scanner reached out to me and commented on how calm and collected the officers and deputies involved were. We train for these incidents and when the actual event happens, our training takes over.”

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