State conservation officer Tim Collette received a complaint this month of a naked person on a jet ski on Gull Lake’s Steamboat Bay, near Brainerd, Minn.
He launched his patrol boat at Cragun’s Resort in time to arrest two men in their early 30s for “offensive, abusive, noisy, obscene’’ disorderly conduct and careless operation of watercraft. Their companion was charged for recklessly driving a speedboat.
Based on an interview with Collette and his DNR report, here’s what took place:
Collette hit the water about 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 12. A Cragun’s employee approached him to say two naked men on jet skis had circled one of the resort’s pontoons while it carried guests. The employee pointed across the bay at the suspects.
While in pursuit, Collette was flagged down by a second pontoon driver who had been cruising the lake with his family, including two young daughters. They, too, had been circled by the jet skiers, who reportedly were wearing nothing but safety vests.
Collette followed the jet skiers into another part of the lake where he saw them dangerously jumping the wakes created by their companion in the speedboat. The blue boat matched the description of one that had reportedly tried to swamp a small sailboat near Cragun’s.
Collette said the incidents apparently started with a verbal altercation between one of the jet skiers and someone on a pontoon boat. Both jet skiers were wearing swimming trunks at the time. They rode away and returned without clothes. Collette said they reportedly made obscene, taunting gestures as they circled.
“Why they chose to take their trunks off, I have no idea,’’ Collette said. “They claimed they came off when they came up out of the water. I don’t buy that for a minute.’’
The two jet skis were vintage Kawasakis from the late 1980s — the stand-up style that lowers into the water when the throttle is off.
Collette said all three suspects had been drinking alcohol, but not enough to make a case against any one of them for drunken driving.
The two jet skiers charged in the Cass County misdemeanor case are Kody Teslaa, 32, of East Gull Lake, and Daniel Klingelhutz, 31, of Waconia. The boat driver was Ryan Klingelhutz, 32, of Chanhassen.