Multiple vehicles were struck and forced off Highway 169 Thursday, Dec. 5, as Jordan and Belle Plaine police squad cars pursued a 28-year-old Shakopee man at speeds around 100 mph.
The suspect, Theodore Sherman Grimm, was arrested south of Belle Plaine and charged with three felonies: fleeing in a motor vehicle, second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon and obstruction of the legal process. Grimm was charged with two gross misdemeanors — fourth-degree assault of a peace officer and obstruction of the legal process — and three misdemeanors: fourth-degree driving while intoxicated, failure to stop for an accident to property and reckless driving.
If convicted of all charges, Grimm faces a maximum of 17 years in prison and $38,000 in fines.
“Mr. Grimm’s actions placed the lives of every person on the roadway last evening in grave danger, including the lives of our officers,” Jordan Police Chief Brett Empey said Friday afternoon. “His actions caused significant property damage to our police squads and to the vehicles of numerous citizens just trying to get home after work. I’m very thankful no serious or fatal injuries to any person(s) occurred.”
According to the criminal complaint and Empey:
Grimm was driving a 2018 Dodge Ram 2500 on Highway 169 southbound Thursday afternoon, hauling a skid steer loader on a trailer. Scott County Dispatch received multiple complaints against Grimm for speeding, swerving all over the road, and almost hitting other vehicles just north of Jordan. One complainant said a vehicle was sideswiped. The Jordan Police Department responded to assist the Scott County Sheriff’s Office in locating the vehicle at 4:39 p.m.
Officer Charles Crohn located Grimm’s truck near the intersection of highways 169 and 282 and observed it “swerving very wildly all over the road,” at times leaving the roadway. Crohn caught up with Grimm and paced his speed at about 100 mph, while continuing to drive wildly, leave the roadway and pass vehicles on the shoulder. As traffic thickened, Crohn was able to navigate his squad car in front of Grimm, blocking him and bringing the vehicle to a stop.
Crohn exited the squad car with his firearm drawn, ordering Grimm to exit the vehicle. Grimm accelerated and struck the squad car, nearly pinning Crohn between the vehicles, and re-entered the highway, striking and totaling another vehicle. Officers observed that it appeared Grimm intentionally turned the vehicle toward Crohn. It was reported that the trailer came within inches of Crohn, who was “in fear of immediate great bodily harm.”
Two Jordan squad cars continued pursuit, aided by a Belle Plaine squad car. The Belle Plaine officer soon disengaged in order assist vehicles struck during the chase.
Determining that Grimm posed a “grave danger to public safety,” officers decided to force the vehicle off the road. Police were able to pin Grimm’s truck between two squad cars and force him to stop near Blakeley Trail, despite Grimm’s continued attempts to drive away. Officers had to break the truck window and remove Grimm, who was resisting arrest, from the cab. Police used a stun gun multiple times to subdue Grimm.
Grimm was transported to St. Francis Regional Medical Center in Shakopee and evaluated for injuries. One Jordan police officer sustained minor injuries from breaking the truck window. Minnesota State Patrol arrived and handled the crashes involving other vehicles. There were no other injuries related to the chase.
“Had our officers not been able to force Mr. Grimm and his vehicle to stop when they did, the end result and consequences of this incident very well may have been tragic, I believe our officers saved lives last night,” Empey said.
Grimm was previously convicted in 2018 in Hennepin County Court for trespassing and in 2016 in Carver County Court for fifth-degree assault.