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Police and fire

Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department
Police say a teen took this Bobcat skid loader on a destructive spree near Milford late Saturday, crushing an ATV and hitting two police cars.

Chasers sent packing in boy’s Bobcat spree

A 15-year-old boy at the controls of a skid loader struck two police cars Saturday night during an hour-long chase that crisscrossed farmland near Milford, according to the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department.

Familiar with how to operate the machine, the boy was not easy to apprehend, said Sgt. Chad Hill, a sheriff’s department spokesman.

“He knew quite well how to maneuver it and avoid being caught,” Hill said.

Officers were sent to the boy’s home near County Roads 250 West and 900 North at 8:40 p.m. after he became unruly.

Hill said the boy was upset over some sort of game and would not listen to his mother who was telling him to go to bed. The boy was able to lock his mother out of the house, and he brandished a baseball bat and machete. He then left the house and drove his family’s Bobcat skid loader into a field, Hill said.

After officers arrived, the boy’s father lent an all-terrain vehicle to a sheriff’s deputy and a state trooper, so they could try to catch the boy in the freshly plowed field, Hill said.

As the officers approached the skid loader, the boy quickly turned around and rammed the ATV with the skid loader’s fork. The deputy and trooper jumped off the ATV just before it was hit, but the ATV was destroyed, Hill said.

The boy then drove in reverse across the field toward a pair of squad cars on County Road 300 West. As he approached the police vehicles, the teen spun the machine and hit the front of both.

For about six miles, officers pursued the boy over fields and roads. At one point, officers tried to use spiked strips to deflate the skid loader’s tires, but the boy moved them out of his way with the machine’s fork, Hill said.

Eventually, officers sprayed the boy with pepper spray, and he surrendered. He was taken to the Pierceton Woods juvenile detention center in Pierceton.

He may be charged as a juvenile with two counts of aggravated battery, according to the sheriff’s department.