A Minneapolis man is being accused of fleeing police in a van he stole from Anoka May 6.
Austin Manuel Fischer, 35, was arraigned May 8 in Anoka County District Court on felony charges of theft and fleeing police in a motor vehicle. His next court appearance is June 9.
According to the criminal complaint, the Anoka Police Department at 11:52 a.m. May 6 received a report that a Pierce Refrigeration van had been stolen from this Anoka business’ parking lot. Surveillance video footage captured an image of a man near the van at 11:15 a.m. who appeared to be in his 30s and was wearing a Pittsburgh Penguins hockey jersey.
An Anoka police officer spotted the van heading east on Highway 10 near 7th Avenue. The driver, later identified as Fischer, did not stop after police activated their emergency sirens and instead continued east on 10 and took the Central Avenue southbound exit in Blaine. Fischer allegedly ran two red lights before a Spring Lake Park police officer was able to use a pit maneuver to run the van off the road on Central Avenue near 81st Avenue.
The person driving the vehicle was wearing a Pittsburgh Penguins hockey jersey, according to the complaint.
Eric Hagen is at