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BCA shares new details on force incident near Chanhassen

ST. PAUL — The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) has confirmed the identity of the woman and a police officer involved in a pursuit and use-of-force incident March 26 near Chanhassen. Amanda Nelson, 33, of Bloomington was treated for minor injuries and has since been taken into custody and charged in connection to the incident.

The BCA has also identified the South Lake Minnetonka police officer who used force during this incident.

Zachary Robertson fired his department handgun. He has 18 years of law enforcement experience and is on standard administrative leave.

According to the preliminary investigation, Robertson conducted a vehicle records check of a license plate while on patrol and the records showed the vehicle belonged to Nelson, along with showing an active aggravated assault arrest warrant for her from Illinois. Robertson tried to pull over Nelson’s vehicle, but she did not stop and a pursuit began. Another South Lake Minnetonka police officer joined the pursuit and used a pursuit intervention tactic (PIT) to stop Nelson near the North Coop Restaurant in Excelsior, Minn. The officer saw that Nelson had a gun and alerted dispatch and Robertson over the radio. Robertson drove his squad car in front of Nelson’s vehicle to prevent her from driving away. She pointed a gun at him and, while inside his squad car, Robertson fired his gun at her multiple times through his windshield. She was not injured and drove away from the scene.

Both officers pursued Nelson and used another PIT maneuver to stop her near highways 41 and 5, causing her vehicle to become disabled. Nelson was arrested without incident several hours later, taken to a hospital for treatment and is now in custody at the Carver County Jail.

BCA crime scene personnel recovered a black Smith & Wesson BB gun air pistol from inside Nelson’s vehicle. The incident was captured on both body camera and squad car cameras. BCA agents are reviewing all available video as part of the active investigation.

The South Lake Minnetonka Police Department asked the BCA to investigate this incident. Once the investigation is complete, the BCA will present its findings without a charging recommendation to the Carver County Attorney’s Office for review.


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