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UPDATE: Search for missing teen leads to three arrests in Alexandria

A search for a 15-year-old female runaway in Alexandria led to the arrest of three people and the recovery of a stolen vehicle. On Thursday, the Alexandria Police Department, West Central Drug and Violent Crime Task Force and Douglas County Sheri...

Ryan Fitzgerald

A search for a 15-year-old female runaway in Alexandria led to the arrest of three people and the recovery of a stolen vehicle.

On Thursday, the Alexandria Police Department, West Central Drug and Violent Crime Task Force and Douglas County Sheriff’s Office conducted an investigation to locate the missing girl.

Three adults were arrested and taken into custody for various charges. They include Dustin Pennig, 25, of White Bear Lake, Amber Gallagher, 21, of Alexandria, and Ryan Fitzgerald, 23, of Alexandria.

The recovered vehicle, a 2006 Chevy Impala worth $4,500, was reported stolen from Alexandria on December 5.

According to the criminal complaint, the owner of the Impala loaned it to someone who, in turn, gave it to Pennig. When initially contacted by police weeks ago, Pennig denied any involvement with the vehicle.

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On Thursday, a police officer spotted the vehicle on Fillmore Street and followed it into the parking lot of Trumm Drug.

When the two people in the vehicle, Pennig and Gallagher, saw the officer, they got out of the car and walked quickly away, according to the criminal complaint.

They were both arrested.

Officers searched the Impala and found three digital scales containing a white residue that was identified as methamphetamine, according to the criminal complaint.

Also, officers allegedly found a plastic baggie in Pennig’s pocket containing 11.3 grams of marijuana. They also found items in the car that were believed to have been stolen from the Alexandria Walmart.

Pennig was charged in Douglas County District Court with felony possession of stolen property, fifth-degree possession of methamphetamine, having a small amount of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Gallagher was cited for a misdemeanor, interfering with a police officer, and two petty misdemeanors, possessing drug paraphernalia and possessing a small amount of marijuana. She posted $600 bail and was released.

The investigation led officers to execute a search warrant at the address of 1401 Hawthorne Street in Alexandria, where the 15-year-old girl was located.

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Fitzgerald was found with the runaway and was charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, a felony. He also had a felony warrant for his arrest.

Fitzgerald was convicted of selling drugs, a felony, in August. He was also convicted in February 2013 of receiving stolen property.

Both Pennig and Fitzgerald remain at the Douglas County Jail.

 

 

 

Al Edenloff is the editor of the twice-weekly Echo Press. He started his journalism career when he was in 10th grade, writing football and basketball stories for the Parkers Prairie Independent.
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