MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Two men accused of assaulting a Minnesota State Patrol trooper have made their first appearance in court and have been charged in the incident, according to the Faribault County Attorney’s Office.
On Monday, Montrell Smith and Anthony Hector Enriquez were charged with third-degree assault, fleeing a peace officer and fifth-degree drug possession in connection to the Dec. 20, 2018 incident.
According to the criminal complaint, the incident began when a Minnesota State Patrol trooper initiated a traffic stop on a Jeep with California plates on Interstate 90 in Faribault County for a traffic violation. Another trooper also responded to assist.
After the troopers approached the vehicle on either side, the driver, Smith, accelerated rapidly. The trooper on the driver’s side was partially inside the Jeep as it was accelerating and was dragged alongside the vehicle as it began eastbound on I-90, the complaint said.
The trooper attempted to shift the Jeep into park, but the passenger, Enriquez, put the vehicle back into gear and assaulted the trooper with his hands in an attempt to force him from the vehicle. The trooper was eventually forced out of the vehicle and suffered substantial body harm. The trooper was released from the hospital the day after the assault.
The trooper has since been identified as Trooper Doug Rauenhorst.
The Jeep was chased by law enforcement in Freeborn County. During the pursuit, Smith and Enriquez allegedly threw bricks of marijuana out of the window. After the Jeep exited the interstate into the city of Albert Lea, the pursuit was ended due to safety concerns.
Both Smith and Enriquez were apprehended later after the Jeep was found parked in an Albert Lea parking lot.
During a search of the vehicle, law enforcement found a warning for a traffic violation issued by the injured trooper, a Minnesota State Patrol stocking hat, drug packaging, luggage and Smith’s driver’s license.
Law enforcement collected the marijuana discarded from the vehicle. The total weight of the recovered marijuana was 15.96 pounds.
The judge set Smith’s and Enriquez’s bail at $500,000 without conditions and $100,000 with conditions. Their next court appearance is set for December 31.