A 33-year-old Mound man was charged Monday with drunken boating and child endangerment after he allegedly led police on a high-speed chase on Lake Minnetonka on July 4 with a baby aboard.
According to the charges, officers spotted Ryan Krueger circling his 17-foot boat around a woman in the water about 8:30 p.m. The woman, who was drunk, told police that she had jumped in without a life jacket after a domestic dispute with Krueger, according to charges filed Monday. She told police she was the 9-month-old baby’s mother.
When the officers tried to arrest Krueger, he cursed at them and sped away, according to the complaint. The baby was lying in the boat without a life jacket, which is against the law.
The chase continued for 15 minutes before more officers joined it and were able to contain Krueger’s boat. As they boarded it, he swung at an officer and threatened to kill the officers, the charges said. He also used the baby as a shield when the officers tried to subdue him with pepper spray.
His blood alcohol level was 0.15 percent, nearly twice the legal limit for driving or boating, the charges say. He told police he fled because he didn’t want to hand the child over to officers.
The child was put in protective custody until the mother sobered up.
Krueger, who remains in jail in lieu of $30,000 bail, was charged with fleeing an officer, terroristic threats, child endangerment and driving a boat while under the influence.
“We are very fortunate there were no injuries as a result of this reckless behavior,” said Hennepin County Sheriff Rick Stanek. “Any situation putting the safety of a child in jeopardy is extremely alarming and is taken very seriously. Boating and alcohol do not mix, and we will not allow anyone to put innocent lives in danger by choosing to combine the two.”