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Morris man charged following confrontation with Wisconsin police

MORRIS – A Morris man was arrested at a music festival in Wisconsin after authorities said he tried to run down three police officers as they pursued him.

Jonathan D. Taller, 29, of 2910 N. Country Oak Lane, was charged by the St. Croix County Sheriff's Department with three counts of first degree recklessly endangering safety, one count of possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine, and one count of possession with intent to deliver more than 50 grams of a Schedule I controlled substance.

He was also charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, second offense, and resisting an officer. All the alleged offenses took place during the Summer Set Music and Camping Festival on Aug. 16 in Somerset, Wisconsin.

In a police report first reported on and provided to the Morris Daily Herald by the New Richmond-News, police allege Taller was in his car when he was approached by several officers attempting to take a male subject into custody on drug-related charges about 3:45 a.m.

Taller did not get out of the car after repeated requests at gunpoint, according to the reports. When Somerset Police Officer Brian Edwards went to open the door to apprehend Taller, Taller put the vehicle in reverse and crashed into a squad car behind him.

Edwards took out his firearm and pointed it at Taller, but Taller reportedly accelerated forward at a high rate of speed toward Edwards and two other officers.

"I kept ordering the male to stop," Edwards stated in the report. "I was in great fear of my life ... other officers' life and safety as well as other campers in the area."

The three officers jumped out of the way and Taller allegedly drove over a tent before his car got stuck in a sand volleyball court 40 yards away. Taller attempted to free the car, but the car's wheels spun deeper into the sand.

Edwards caught up to the vehicle with the other officers and used a collapsible baton to break the front driver's side window. He confronted Taller at gunpoint and Taller parked the car and surrendered.

Taller was handcuffed and searched. No weapons were found. But small bags he was carrying contained a white rock substance and baggies with a white powdery substance. He appeared to be under the influence of narcotics and told police "several times he was high."

He was transported to Westfields Hospital in New Richmond, Wisconsin, to complete a legal blood draw kit before being booked into the St. Croix County Jail, where he remained in custody as of Tuesday afternoon.

A search in the vehicle Taller was driving yielded dozens of bags with a white powdery substance and crystals, more than $5,000 in cash, and several used glass pipes, among other items identifying Taller.

No injuries were reported at the scene or at the tent Taller ran over.

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