Written by Al Stover
Chas Douglas Zimdars appeared in Montana’s 15th Judicial District Court July 11.
Zimdars was charged with the misdemeanor charges of criminal trespass, fleeing from or eluding peace officer and driving without a valid driver’s license. He was also charged with criminal endangerment and criminal mischief.
According to charging documents, Fort Peck Department of Law and Justice Lieutenant James Summers responded to the 200 block of East Helena Street in Wolf Point to a report of a person who had his truck stuck, although differing reports have been circulating.
When Summers arrived in the area, he saw the truck, which was later revealed to be a four-door Ford with Montana license plates, in a ditch. The male, who had been outside the vehicle, jumped back into the truck and started to drive back and forth. This led to the vehicle getting unstuck.
Documents said that the truck drove south, then turned west on Idaho Street. Summers activated his emergency lights to initiate a stop, but the truck sped north on First Avenue South, turning west on Helena Street. Summers had watched as people, who were on the street, moved to get out of the way of the truck.
The vehicle turned south on Second Avenue South and then east onto Idaho Street, back to where the pursuit started. The truck was parked east of the sewage treatment building, and was once again stuck in the mud. The driver exited the truck and walked to the rear.
Summers ordered the driver to get away from the truck and to drop whatever he was holding. The driver told
Summers to shoot him. He then dropped the object and walked toward the officer.
The driver secured in handcuffs was identified as Chas Zimdars, who said he was protecting everyone and preventing everyone from getting killed because the water treatment plant was poisoned and going to kill everyone, so he had to stop it. Zimdars was asked if he had done any drugs recently, to which he responded that he had just done some meth and he had a small amount he was using in his truck.
Charging documents stated that a witness approached Summers and told the officer that the male had been hitting a power box of the sewage treatment plant. Summers noticed the gate to the plant was open and an electrical box was visibly damaged. A witness also explained the driver had been using a big wrench, hit the box and exploded. Documents also stated the box was blackened, as if it had been on fire. Summers located a large pipe wrench on the ground behind the truck. Zimdars, who stated he felt tingly from being electrocuted by the box, was transported to the hospital for treatment for his injuries.
According to charging documents, Zimdars told Summers that, earlier in the day, he had taken a portal under the underpass in Wolf Point to another area, where he had spent most of the day. He also said he was just trying to stop the poison that was released from the water treatment center to the people.
Zimdars was medically cleared and incarcerated at Roosevelt County Detention Center with a $50,000 bond, which he posted June 14. He currently released on bail.
Zimdars pleaded not guilty to all five charges. He is scheduled to have an omnibus hearing Aug. 14 and his trial is set for Sept. 26.