Man accused of going on tractor ride of destruction at local farm - East Idaho News
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Man accused of going on tractor ride of destruction at local farm

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IDAHO FALLS – A 39-year-old Challis man was arrested on Wednesday after deputies say he broke into a home and nearly destroyed a nearby farm.

Michael Jon Bauchman was charged with felony burglary and felony malicious injury to property.

Around 4 p.m., Bonneville County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a home on the 2000 South Block of 65th West after the homeowners said they found an intruder in their house, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.

The intruder, later identified as Bauchman, allegedly drove away from the home after slashing the tires of the homeowner’s car.

Deputies say they found a backpack in the garage with Bauchman’s identification.

While still at home, deputies learned that Bauchman was seen “using a large tractor to damage property at a nearby farm in the 7000 West block of West Broadway.”

The reporting party said a man, later identified as Bauchman, had tried to run him over with the tractor and was damaging other farm equipment, hay and other tractors on the property.

When deputies arrived, Bauchman was reportedly still using a large tractor to damage property. After ignoring commands to stop, deputies “deployed less lethal impact rounds” into the cab of the tractor.

Bauchman allegedly continued to physically fight with deputies, even after he was secured in handcuffs and taken to the hospital for a medical clearance.

The reporting parties and property owners say they did not know Bauchman, and no connection to either location was discovered.

damage to tractor
Damage to a tractor at the farm. | Bonneville County Sheriff

The damage to a John Deere tractor and other property at the farm is estimated to be more than $125,000.

Bauchman was later transported to the Bonneville County Jail. The investigation is ongoing, and further charges are pending, the sheriff’s office said.

Though Bauchman has been charged with these crimes, it does not necessarily mean he committed them. Everyone is presumed innocent until they are proven guilty.