A Mazeppa, Minn., man has been charged with driving onto a Rosemount man’s property, hooking up his vehicle trailer and driving away with it.
Dale Michael Bale, 54, is charged with two felonies: theft and receiving stolen property, each of which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
According to the criminal complaint, a Rosemount man who lives on Clayton Avenue called police at about noon Oct. 26 to report a theft.
The victim told police that he was at home taking a nap when he heard a vehicle drive onto his property. He looked outside and saw an older-model Ford pickup with its hood up.
The victim said he went into a workshop on his property, and shortly afterward he heard the pickup start up. When he looked outside, he saw the Ford driving away with his vehicle trailer hitched to the back, he said.
The victim chased the Ford and yelled at the driver, who didn’t stop.
Shortly afterward, Mendota Heights police and Minnesota State Patrol officers spotted the pickup pulling the trailer on northbound Interstate 35W. The truck was stopped, and the driver was identified as Bale.
The trailer’s license plates had been switched, and officers found the original plates inside the pickup when they searched it, according to the complaint.
The trailer is valued at about $3,000.
Bale has an extensive criminal history that includes felony convictions for receiving stolen property in 1985, 1995, 2000, 2006, 2007 and 2010; offering a forged check twice in 1990; theft in 1997, 2000, twice in 2006 and 2011; escape from custody in 1997; possession of stolen property in 2000; possession of burglary or theft tools in 2004 and 2010; and third-degree burglary in 2006.
Bale has been released from custody on bond. An omnibus hearing in his case is scheduled Feb. 5 in Dakota County District Court in Hastings.