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Trooper injured in chase from Minnesota to Wisconsin

MEENON, Wis. -- A Minnesota State Patrol trooper was injured and her squad car heavily damaged during a Tuesday night chase that ended in Burnett County, Wis. Burnett County Chief Deputy Scott M. Burns said trooper Bridget Allison Heaton was inju...

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MEENON, Wis. -- A Minnesota State Patrol trooper was injured and her squad car heavily damaged during a Tuesday night chase that ended in Burnett County, Wis.

Burnett County Chief Deputy Scott M. Burns said trooper Bridget Allison Heaton was injured while assisting Pine County deputies in the pursuit of a silver Dodge Durango traveling at speeds estimated up to 100 mph. As the pursuit reached Burnett County on North Markville Road in the Town of Blaine, Heaton lost control of her squad car while negotiating a curve, and it overturned, Burns said.

Heaton was taken by North Memorial Ambulance to a Duluth hospital with what Burns called injuries that were not life-threatening. She was treated and released at Essentia Health-St. Mary's Medical Center, according to the State Patrol.

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The vehicle sustained major damage, Burns said.

According to the Pine County Sheriff's Office, the chase began at 10:24 p.m. when a Pine County deputy attempted to stop a vehicle on Wildlife Road north of state Highway 48 east of Hinckley.

The drive failed to stop and led deputies and Heaton east on Highway 48, north on Fleming Logging Road, through Duxbury and Markville and then into Wisconsin, according to the Pine County Sheriff's Office. The vehicle traveled at speeds faster than 100 mph, was driven in the wrong lane and braked erratically.

Burnett County deputies, St. Croix Tribal Police and Siren police joined the chase after being notified at 10:36 p.m. that the Durango was expected to enter Wisconsin, Burns said.

The driver of the Durango was able to avoid a set of stop sticks placed by a Burnett County deputy, but a second set was placed successfully near Lake 26 Road, Burns said. The driver continued south into Danbury, Wis., where he crashed into trees, severely damaging the vehicle, and fled on foot. Two passengers were apprehended and later released.

The driver, a 22-year-old man, was arrested after being found hiding in an abandoned building near Pine Street and Fourth Avenue in Danbury, Burns said. He had not been charged as of Thursday afternoon.

The Pine County Sheriff's Office said the man, from Onamia, Minn., faced numerous felony warrants for his arrest and now faces additional charges in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

He was taken to the Burnett County Jail and later transferred to a hospital for evaluation of a medical condition, Burns said.

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The sheriff's office also was notified that during the chase, a Pine County deputy drove his squad car into the driver's side of a 2002 GMC Envoy pulled over along state Highway 35 in Danbury. The deputy believed that it was the suspect's vehicle and was attempting to prevent its occupants from leaving it, Burns said. No one was injured, and damage to the two vehicles was minor.

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