Chase suspect appears in Florence court


Staff Writer

FLORENCE, Wis. – A Georgia man accused of leading authorities on a high-speed chase through Florence and Iron counties made his first appearance in Florence County Court.

Karl Dresch, 33, of Crawfordville, Ga. faces one felony count of recklessly endangering safety-first degree and one felony count of fleeing and eluding an officer.

If convicted, he could spend up to 16 years in prison.

Florence County District Attorney Douglas Drexler asked for a $5,000 cash bond, due to Dresch’s lack of ties to the area and his criminal history of an operating while intoxicated conviction in Georgia and a resisting and obstructing conviction in Michigan.

Dresch’s attorney Don Powell said that his client now resides in Houghton with family. He also pointed out that Dresch’s bond in his Iron County case was recently reduced from $5,000 to $1,000.

Judge Leon D. Stenz decided to order a $2,000 cash bond.

Dresch will return to Florence County Court for a preliminary examination on Oct. 21.

In Iron County, Dresch is scheduled for a supplemental pre-trial on Dec. 16 and a two-day jury trial on Jan. 21 and 22. There, he faces one felony count of fleeing and eluding-fourth degree, one misdemeanor count of operating while intoxicated, and one misdemeanor count of open intoxicants in a vehicle.

The charges against Dresch stem from a June 7 incident.

According to the criminal complaint in the case, a deputy from the Florence County Sheriff’s Department observed Dresch traveling in a Pontiac Trans Am at a speed of 72 miles per hour in a 55 miles per hour zone on County Road N in Florence.

When the deputy attempted to initiate a traffic stop, Dresch did not pull over.

The chase continued from County Road N to U.S. 2 and into Iron County in Michigan.

Deputies reported that chase speeds reached 146 miles per hour.

Dresch voluntarily pulled over on County Road 424, just east of Alpha.

No one was injured in the incident, though deputies noted that Dresch nearly hit several vehicles while passing traffic in no-passing zones.

Nikki Younk’s e-mail address is