Police chase involving stolen car crosses state lines

Staff Report
Posted 6/29/23

A high-speed chase involving a stolen vehicle spanning from Prescott to Interstate 494 led to the arrest of a 33-year-old Redwood Falls (Minn.) man, who had methamphetamine and fentanyl in the …

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Police chase involving stolen car crosses state lines


A high-speed chase involving a stolen vehicle spanning from Prescott to Interstate 494 led to the arrest of a 33-year-old Redwood Falls (Minn.) man, who had methamphetamine and fentanyl in the vehicle.

Ermaine Lewis Burke, formerly of Hastings, Minn., was ordered to pay $1,000 cash bail June 15 in Pierce County Circuit Court with felony attempting to flee or elude an officer, operating a motor vehicle without the owner’s consent, possession of narcotic drugs and possession of methamphetamine. If convicted, Burke faces up to six years in prison and/or up to $10,000 in fines.

At 2:55 a.m. Jan. 6, a Prescott officer noticed a dark blue vehicle that appeared to be driving faster than the 30 mile per hour speed limit on Highway 10 passing Cherry Street. The officer began to follow the car, reaching a speed of 70 mph heading east on Highway 10 and still not catching it.

Burke and the officer headed east to Hilton Street where Burke skipped a stop sign before making a hard right turn without signaling. The officer continued to follow the car as it turned onto Pearl Street, ran another stop sign and distanced itself. The officer turned on his lights and sirens to attempt to stop the car. When the chase returned to Highway 10, speeds reached 90 mph as the dark blue vehicle drove west in the eastbound lane.

The officer alerted dispatch of the pursuit when approaching the bridge toward Minnesota. At this point, the officer was close enough to run the license plate and learned the car was reported stolen out of Minneapolis.

The chase continued toward Cottage Grove, reaching speeds of around 115 mph. Cottage Grove police spiked the front driver’s side tire, dropping the vehicle’s speed to 50-55 mph.

Despite the tire, the chase continued north on Highway 61 to Saint Paul Park, with speeds dropping to 40 mph. A second officer spiked the three remaining tires, holding the northbound car to speeds of 35-40 mph.

Prescott, Cottage Grove, Saint Paul Park and South Saint Paul police, Washington County Sheriff’s Department and Minnesota Patrol were all involved in the chase at the time.

The Prescott officer attempted to pass the vehicle on the left in order to stop it, but the car swerved at the officer, nearly striking the car. The officer elected to attempt a pass from the right instead, where there were almost two lanes between the cars.

Passing the vehicle, the police pitted the vehicle in the snowbank of the on-ramp of Interstate 494. Two males jumped out of the front passenger window, attempting to evade the police.

The Prescott K9 was released, but both males jumped the fence before the dog caught them. Two females in the back of the vehicle were arrested at the time.

Police tracked the males’ location to a nearby apartment complex. The Prescott officer arrested the first male in a nearby ravine, while other officers located the second male and arrested him. The two informed officers that they ingested narcotics, so they were transported to the hospital.

The Prescott officer returned to the scene of the crash, finding a substance that appeared to be cocaine or fentanyl in the center console.

After the discovery, the K9 was used to scan the vehicle, sitting down to indicate the detection of a narcotic odor in the car. The vehicle was transported back to the Prescott Police Department for testing.

The first tested item was a piece of aluminum foil with a brown residue found in a blue bag on the driver’s seat. The substance tested positive for heroin.

A bag with a white crystalline residue was found in the same bag, testing positive for methamphetamine.

The item from the center console tested positive for fentanyl.

One squad car was towed during the chase, suffering too much damage to continue to Interstate 494.

Burke was scheduled to appear for a status conference in Pierce County Circuit Court at 2:30 p.m