A cooperative-owned newspaper serving Burnett & Polk counties since 1933 • Published every Wednesday by the Inter-County Cooperative Publishing Association
COPYRIGHT Inter-County Cooperative Publishing Association • Box 490 • Frederic, WI
Backstroking while intoxicated?
James A. Lynch
Drunk boater tries to escape by swimming
by Greg Marsten
Leader staff writer
DRESSER – Reports of a reckless boater on Sand Lake near Dresser on Saturday, June 30, led to a bizarre confrontation between the boater and authorities, as the man attempted to elude the police by swimming.
According to a probable cause report filed by the Polk County Sheriff's Department, reports came in that a man was piloting his high-performance Stingray-style ski boat recklessly, almost hitting swimmers and allegedly trying to swamp other boats.
When a sheriff's deputy arrived, several people pointed out the boat in question, which was stalled out, with the pilot trying to get it started.
The deputy was able to make contact with the man in question, later identified as James A. Lynch, 27, Dresser.
However, Lynch refused to come to shore to answer deputy questions, and instead, towed the boat ashore by swimming, but then spent over two hours swimming away from police, avoiding them at all times and refusing to come ashore, in spite of calls that he was under arrest.
After repeated threats, police used pepper spray to get Lynch to comply, eventually taking him into custody, where the deputies noted he had slurred speech and smelled of alcohol. He was arrested and taken in for a blood draw, and later taken to the Polk County Jail.
Lynch has since been charged with felony second-degree reckless endangerment, as well as four other misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and two counts of bail jumping. He also faces pending charges of intoxicated boating.
He went before Judge Molly GaleWyrick on Monday, July 2, where she set a $1,500 cash bond for his release, as well as a July 5 preliminary hearing, where Judge Jeffery Anderson will decide if enough evidence exists to move ahead to trial.
Lynch is currently on probation for pending charges of driving while intoxicated - his third. That case was set to head to trial this coming December.