Sioux Falls man charged after side-swiping police car, 'slow-speed' pursuit

Police were en route to a separate call when they say they noticed the driver swerving into oncoming traffic.


SIOUX FALLS — A Sioux Falls man spent Monday night in jail after police say he side-swiped a patrol car and drove off.

At approximately 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13, two Sioux Falls police officers were en route to a report of a hit-and-run vehicle crash in the area of East Sixth Street and Cleveland Avenue when they noticed a vehicle behind them swerving through lanes of traffic.

Police spokesman Sam Clemens said the officers witnessed the vehicle enter oncoming lanes of traffic along East Sixth Street multiple times and were led to believe the driver may have been under the influence of alcohol.

As the officers slowed down to allow the van to pass them, Clemens said the van — driven by 40-year-old David Rocky Mountain, of Sioux Falls — side-swiped a patrol car. Police activated their emergency lights and sirens, but the vehicle failed to pull over.

Police continued to follow the Rocky Mountain in what Clemens called a “slow-speed” pursuit. After turning north on Cleveland Avenue, the vehicle came to a stop in the parking lot of an apartment complex, where Rocky Mountain was placed under arrest. No injures were reported, and only minor damage was sustained to the police car.


Rocky Mountain was charged with driving under the influence, aggravated eluding, failure to stop for an accident causing damage, open container, no driver’s license, three counts of illegal lane change and one count of following too closely.

An initial appearance for Rocky Mountain has been scheduled for Tuesday afternoon. If convicted on all counts, he could be sentenced to serve as many as four years and six months in county jail or prison, plus pay fines of up to $9,000. Restitution may also be ordered for damages sustained to the patrol car.

Rocky Mountain currently has four other pending criminal cases across South Dakota for charges including driving under the influence, possession of methamphetamine, second-degree burglary and receiving a stolen vehicle.

A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on local news in Sioux Falls. He also writes regional news spanning across the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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