Photo: Dakota County.
Photo: Dakota County.
Updated: July 07, 2020 03:06 PM
Created: July 07, 2020 02:50 PM
A Hastings man, who was involved in a standoff with police earlier this month has been charged with multiple crimes, including felony-level threats of violence, felony-level violation of harassment and child endangerment.
Court records in Dakota County state Gerald Edward Bolster, 36, has been charged with three counts of threats of violence, two counts of child endangerment and one count of violation of a harassment/restraining order.
If convicted on all charges, Bolster would serve a maximum sentence of 22 years in prison.
According to the criminal complaint, on July 2 at about 11 a.m., police responded to a disturbance at a Hastings residence. The reporting party, identified as "A.S." in the criminal complaint, stated a male had threatened the trailer park manager after she had informed him that a vehicle on his property was being towed. The caller also informed law enforcement that she believed the male was barred by a restraining order from the property. Bolster was identified as one of the two people to live at the property.
While en route to the residence, authorities learned of an active harassment restraining order (HRO), which bars Bolster from having contact with the other person, identified as "B.B." in the complaint, or from being within three blocks of her home. The HRO was served on May 22, according to the complaint.
Upon arrival, police spoke with an individual identified as "L.W." in the complaint, who said earlier that day she went to the residence to inform Bolster and B.B. that the vehicle in their driveway was being towed. She added that Bolster responded by "bursting out the door and began screaming and swearing" at her.
Then, at about 11:27 a.m., law enforcement knocked on the door of the residence. After about a minute, B.B. answered the door with two small children beside her. Police asked B.B. to step out of the residence with the children. After the two children came outside onto the steps, police asked B.B. about her son who was still inside the residence, which caused B.B. to step back into the doorway. Bolster then came out from behind the door, placed his hand on B.B.'s shoulder, and began to push her out of the house. Authorities were unable to stop Bolster from closing the door, and two children — ages 4 and 13 — were still in the residence with Bolster.
Law enforcement and Bolster exchanged conversation. When police informed Bolster there was an active HRO against him, he said, "You come in here, I'm gonna shoot one of you (expletive)! Have a good day!" Then, after police told Bolster he was under arrest for the HRO violation, Bolster replied, "Ok. It's either death by cop or a court date. You pick." Law enforcement also asked Bolster multiple times to release the children, but he refused, the complaint states.
The complaint goes on to state that Bolster continued threats of shooting police and mentioned "death by cop" to police. After Dakota County SWAT arrived on scene they used a loudspeaker to inform Bolster multiple times that he was under arrest, needed to exit the residence and needed to release the children. Bolster then responded with threats of blowing up the trailer with the children still inside and at one point started throwing items out of a window at the gas meter.
The standoff lasted about 15 hours, according to the complaint. At one point, the 13-year-old left the residence but the 4-year-old remained inside.
Then, at about 2:35 a.m. the next day, law enforcement entered the home and placed Bolster under arrest. Police discovered a plastic handgun and multiple NERF guns in the residence. Bolster was placed in an ambulance and transported to a nearby hospital. While en route to the hospital, he continued to make threats against police, stating "I'll get out of prison in 10 years and start killing cops."
Bolster has prior convictions of domestic assault-related offenses, specifically felony stalking in August 2019 and felony fourth-degree assault from December 2014, according to the complaint.
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