A 57-year-old man has been accused of crashing his car into a garage, dragging a man 10 to 20 feet underneath his vehicle then taking off.

Thomas Keller, of Mandan, was charged Monday with reckless endangerment, leaving the scene of an accident involving injury and aggravated reckless driving. He had his initial appearance Monday, where a judge set his bond at $5,000 cash.

Mandan Police officers were dispatched at about 1:41 a.m. Friday to a trailer park located near East Meadow Lane and Third Street Southwest for a report of a vehicle that had driven through a mobile home, according to an affidavit filed in the case. When officers arrived, they found a large opening the size of a vehicle on the side of a garage.

A 65-year-old man who was inside the garage was struck by Keller's vehicle. When the vehicle started backing out of the garage, it dragged him 10 to 20 feet until he was able to get unhooked from the vehicle.

Officers used pieces of the vehicle that were left behind to identify the make and model. They found a mirror with a part number on it, which matched a 1993 Buick Park Avenue-type car.

An officer working Friday morning drove around and found a vehicle matching that description in a different trailer court. The officer spoke to people who lived there and identified Keller as the owner. 

Keller had called 911 that day to report his vehicle was stolen. Keller told police he parked the car outside of his residence the night before and left the keys in the ignition.

Police had interviewed a witness, who said Keller came to her house to use her phone and call his boss about the car.

When confronted by an officer, Keller said he struck the garage with his vehicle after hitting a speed bump and losing control. Keller told the officer he left because he panicked, and he recalled seeing a man inside the garage.

The victim needed about 20 stitches on the heel of his foot and five stitches on his pinkie finger.

(Reach Blair Emerson at 701-250-8251 or Blair.Emerson@bismarcktribune.com)

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