Farmington police chase ends with three damaged police cars

The Farmington Police Department participated in its own demolition derby of sorts last week while chasing a suspect along Highway 3.

Patrick Christopher Armstrong, 28, of Rosemount, led police on a chase that resulted in damage to three Farmington police cars on Aug. 6.

According to the police report, Armstrong called officers in Farmington stating that he was in his vehicle in Rambling River Park and he had a gun, knife and sword. He said he wanted four squad cars to show up and he was going to force officers to kill him when they arrived. He also warned he was a large man and would be combative.

“He made claims of being armed and suicidal,” Farmington Police Chief Brian Lindquist said. “It obviously gave us quite a bit of concern because parks tend to be a place where there are lots of young people.”

When officers arrived at the park, they found Armstrong in an eastern parking lot and dispatch made attempts to contact him again.

“He made some rather disparaging comments about hurting police and himself,” Lindquist said. “We tried to close down roads around him before he went mobile.”

But before they were able to surround him, Armstrong fled northbound on Highway 3, swerving in and out of traffic.

Police officers conducted pursuit intervention techniques, where police used their own vehicles to strike Armstrong’s car, which eventually forced the vehicle off the road near Empire Township.

Three police cars made contact with Armstrong’s vehicle. The first marked police vehicle forced the suspect’s car to do a 360-degree turn and the second car suffered front-end damage while attempting to push the suspect’s car off the road. The third car suffered damage to its passenger side.

Armstrong exited his vehicle, but refused to comply with officers’ orders. Officers discharged their stun guns three times before incapacitating Armstrong and he was taken into custody.

“There were no injuries to police or himself,” Lindquist said. “It was just a bad day for property.”

A search of Armstrong’s car revealed a folding knife in the passenger seat, a knife in the glove box, a small sword in the trunk and an opened bottle of whiskey in the front passenger door.

The department didn’t charge him with an alcohol-related offense. The police report did not mention finding a gun.

He was charged with fleeing a peace officer and obstructing the legal process, both felonies, which carry a maximum combined sentence of eight years in custody and/or a $15,000 fine.

Two of the vehicles are expected to be repaired, but Lindquist said, “I haven’t heard back from insurance, but considering the damage and how much the car is worth, there’s a high probability it will be totaled.”