Man gets away after 100 mph chase

Published 3:28 pm Sunday, June 21, 2015

An Albert Lea man led Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office deputies on a high-speed chase Saturday night, starting south of Albert Lea and ending with a crash in the city.

Speeds reached near 100 mph, and the driver, identified as Levi James Andersen, 28, reportedly fled the crash on foot, escaping from authorities.

According to a news release, a Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office deputy pulled over Andersen’s vehicle just before 10:30 p.m. near the intersection of U.S. Highway 65 and Interstate 35 for an equipment violation and for driving conduct.

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When a backup deputy came to assist, Andersen reportedly fled in the vehicle.

Deputies chased after him, reaching speeds near 100 mph.

The chase led into Albert Lea, where Andersen reportedly crashed into a parked car before driving the vehicle across the railroad tracks northeast of the Newton Avenue and Front Street intersection and into a pond near the railroad tracks south of East Pearl Street. He then reportedly fled on foot.

A news release stated the railway was closed for a couple hours while authorities searched for Andersen and assessed damage to the railroad tracks.

A K-9 officer was called in from the Worth County Sheriff’s Office to assist in the search.

Andersen was not found.

Deputies did, however, find methamphetamine in and around his vehicle, according to the release.

Freeborn County Sheriff Kurt Freitag said he does not believe the public is in danger.

Freitag said he anticipates a warrant will go out for Andersen’s arrest as he will have numerous charges pending in Freeborn County District Court.

The Minnesota State Patrol, Albert Lea Fire Department and Albert Lea Police Department assisted.

The incident remains under investigation.