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Lakeville Man Flees Police Speeding up to 126 MPH

The incident resulted in three felony charges.

A Lakeville man was arrested after driving through the front yards of town homes and driving at speeds up to 126 MPH.

Heath James Ward was charged with two counts of first-degree driving while impaired, which carries up to seven years in prison and a $14,000 fine. He was also charged with fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle, which carries up to three years plus one day in prison and a $5,000 fine. 

According to the complaint, on Oct. 18 a Lakeville police officer was adjusting equipment on his fully marked squad in the area of the roundabout exit for eastbound Dodd Boulevard from Highview when Ward sped into the roundabout with squealing tires. 

Ward swerved and braked to miss hitting the squad car and nearly hit the center of the roundabout. The officer shined his flashlight at Ward and the uniformed officer observed Ward looking at him. Ward then sped into traffic at 84 mph in a 55 mph speed zone, according to the complaint.

The Lakeville police officer pursued Ward and at one point the radar showed Ward's speed reached 126 mph. Ward's vehicle hit an electrical utility box on 175th Street West, but he continued on and drove into the front yards of town homes on Gillette Way. Ward "narrowly missed" hitting trees and a home on Gillette Way before he stopped the vehicle and fled on foot. 

Eventually Ward tripped and fell. When he fell, the police officer heard him call out, "'I give up, I give up" and "I made a mistake.'"

As the officer interacted with Ward, he could smell a very strong odor of alcohol on Ward, who had bloodshot, watery eyes and spoke with slurred speech. A breath test showed an alcohol concentration of 0.22.

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