WAGNER -- A Wagner man has been charged with using a stolen car to elude police and almost hit an officer during a chase that ended at the bottom of a ravine near Marty.
According to court documents, Donald Cournoyer Jr., 35, was arrested last week in connection with a July incident.
Shortly after 7:30 a.m. on July 19, Wagner Police Chief Tim Simonsen reportedly saw Cournoyer in a white Chevy Suburban at a Wagner gas station. Cournoyer allegedly sped away when Simonsen got into his vehicle.
Simonsen saw Cournoyer return to the gas station and speed away when he approached in his patrol vehicle, beginning a pursuit.
Cournoyer reportedly ran a stop sign and drove west on S.D. Highway 46 at 70 mph. According to the affidavit filed by Simonsen, Cournoyer took several turns during the pursuit, heading toward Marty and at one point almost hitting cows on the road.
Cournoyer allegedly swerved toward a tribal officer who had been waiting to join the pursuit on 390th Avenue. The tribal officer took over the chase, with Cournoyer reportedly driving toward and then around Marty at speeds of up to 80 mph,
After failing to stop after running over spikes deployed by a Charles Mix County deputy, Cournoyer reportedly swerved toward the deputy, who retreated toward a ditch. Court documents indicate that a dash cam video from Simonsen's patrol vehicle shows Cournoyer swerving toward the deputy.
Cournoyer allegedly ran over a second set of spikes, then drove into a field, through a ditch, across a maintenance road, back into a field and into a ravine, where he exited the vehicle and fled on foot.
Simonsen and two deputies tried to pursue Cournoyer on foot, but lost his trail in the ravine. The vehicle Cournoyer had been driving was located and was later determined to have been stolen earlier that morning from a Wagner woman.
Cournoyer is charged with one count of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer, a Class 2 felony; grand theft of more than $5,000 and less than $100,000.01, a Class 4 felony; and aggravated eluding, a Class 6 felony. If convicted on all charges, he could face up to 37 years in prison.