Vehicle pursuit leads to arrest of Montello man

A high-speed vehicle pursuit that began in Green Lake County and ended with a vehicle crash on County Road K, Town of Packwaukee, in Marquette County last Friday evening led to the arrest of, and felony charges filed against Austin E. Manthey, 20, of Montello.

Marquette County Sheriff Joe Konrath reported that a 2005 Chevrolet sedan driven by Manthey was involved in a pursuit involving Green Lake County Sheriff’s Officers and the Princeton Police Department on February 15th. Marquette County authorities were asked to assist them at around 4:45 p.m. in this county.

The criminal complaint says that a Marquette County deputy saw the vehicle on State Hwy. 22 in the Town of Montello and reported that the vehicle was traveling 90 mph in a 55-mph zone. The vehicle was seen passing in a no passing zone and into oncoming traffic. After the deputy activated his emergency lights and siren, he reported that the suspect vehicle accelerated to 102 mph.

Spike strips were laid in the road, but the vehicle drove the wrong way on the roadway to avoid them, according to the complaint. It turned onto County Hwy. F, continuing at a high rate of speed. Officers lost sight of it but then located it on State Hwy. 22 coming into Montello, traveling approximately 96 mph.

A deputy was advised that the vehicle was driving on County Hwy. K, and he placed spike strips in the roadway. The complaint says that as the suspect vehicle approached that location, Deputy Brandner was in the roadway on the opposite side to where the suspect vehicle was driving. As the suspect vehicle approached, it swerved north towards the deputy and into oncoming traffic. Deputy Brander had to run to get out of the way and the suspect vehicle came within 3 feet of striking the deputy’s vehicle. The report says the deputy had been able to get behind that vehicle.

After this, the deputy observed that the suspect vehicle’s tires were squealing, the vehicle was going sideways and crashed into a tree.

The complaint goes on to report that the suspect exited the vehicle and fled toward Buffalo Lake. He was located hiding under a staircase near a boathouse and the deputy reported that Manthey did not obey commands and resisted efforts to take him into custody. It says Deputy Brandner injured his ankle and back while the suspect was resisting his efforts and injured a hand while slipping and falling during the foot pursuit.

Assisting Sheriff’s officers was the Montello Police Department, and the Wisconsin State Patrol is investigating the crash.

Manthey appeared in Marquette County Circuit Court on Monday, where he was charged with felony counts of Knowingly Fleeing/Eluding an Officer, 1st Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety, and Resisting/Obstructing/Causing Bodily Harm to an Officer, along with eight traffic citations. At his bond hearing on Monday, Manthey received a $10,000 cash bond. An initial appearance is scheduled for March 7th.