Zimmerman man sentenced to 30 years for attempted murder, burglary

A man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for trying to steal guns from a pawn shop and threatening to kill bystanders in Zimmerman, according to Sherburne County officials.

Twenty-year-old Manuel Richard Buck was convicted of attempted theft, attempted burglary and attempted second-degree murder for an incident on July 10, 2021. On Tuesday, he was sentenced by Sherburne County District Court Judge Karen Schommer.

A press release from the county attorney’s office states that Buck attempted to break into the Zimmerman Trading Post on July 10, 2021. When the alarms in the store went off, Buck ran from the store and into a nearby yard, as stated by witnesses.

Two witnesses began chasing Buck, who then turned around and started swinging a machete. The witnesses were cut multiple times but were able to fight off Buck until law enforcement arrived.

The criminal investigation determined that Buck planned to rob guns from the pawn shop and use them to commit a mass shooting. According to the release, the FBI and Sherburne County investigators found ammunition and bomb-making materials that Buck had hidden in a park in Sherburne County.

Investigators stated that there have been multiple instances dating back to 2018 of Buck researching and planning to carry out his own mass shooting.

“The victims are the people who placed themselves in harm’s way in this case. Their selfless actions prevented what could have been grievous harm to many others,” County Attorney Kathleen Heaney said. “On behalf of the citizens of this County, I extend to them my heartfelt thanks. I also extend my deep appreciation to our criminal justice partners who assisted us in this extensive investigation.”