3 dead, including suspect, after incident in which Hubbard County Sheriff's deputy was also shot

February 15, 2019 07:07 PM

The Hubbard County Sheriff's Office has confirmed three people were killed and a sheriff's deputy was shot during an incident that occurred Thursday night in and around Nevis.

“We’ve had homicides but something like this, we have not seen before,” said Hubbard County Sheriff Cory Aukes.

A release from the sheriff's office said the deputy was treated and released at Essentia Health in Fargo.

Sherman Anderson, a close friend of the deputy, told KSTP earlier Friday that the deputy suffered injuries to his head, but was treated and released early Friday morning. Anderson said the deputy is now at home with his family, recovering.

Aukes said a 911 call came from a home on Puaul Bunyan Trail just before 8 p.m. Thursday.

When deputies arrived on the scene, they discovered a deceased female outside the home. According to the sheriff, she was not the homeowner. The armed suspect had fled in the woman's vehicle before law enforcement arrived. A second victim, who had also been shot, was still inside the vehicle.

Aukes confirmed the victims knew the suspect.

Deputies located the vehicle north of Nevis and began a pursuit that lasted around 20 minutes. During the chase, the suspect fired at the pursuing vehicles, striking one of the deputies, the sheriff's office said

“When the initial shots took place he was driving,"  Aukes said. "He was moving when he shot the initial officer, so that was from a moving vehicle at a moving vehicle. Then at the second location, he went in the ditch and then shot at the two officers.”

Aukes said the pursuit ended when the suspect put his vehicle into a ditch on County Road 119. Authorities said a pursuing deputy came upon the vehicle. The suspect was outside. Both the deputy and suspect fired their weapons and the suspect got back in the vehicle.

According to the sheriff's office, deputies later discovered the suspect was deceased. The bodies of all three people were taken to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner's Office, where an autopsy will be conducted and they will be identified.

“This is a huge thing, they’re not only my men and my staff, they're my friends and they're my coworkers,” he said. “It’s rough listening to the radio traffic hearing people hollering shots fired. It's tough, it really is.”

The sheriff's office said Becker, Cass and Wadena County sheriff's deputies, state troopers, Park Rapids and Walker police officers and Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agents responded to the scene, but did not witness the shooting.

The sheriff's office has asked the BCA to investigate the matter. The deputy who fired their weapon has been placed on standard administrative leave.

Hubbard County deputies do not wear body cameras, according to the sheriff's office. Investigators will determine whether dash cameras captured the incident.

A reporter with WDAY-TV, an ABC affiliate station in Fargo, said that as of Friday morning, there were several scenes under investigation, all within a few miles of each other.

One scene was said to be at a home daycare in Nevis, at which a crime lab unit was present.

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Rebecca Omastiak & Callan Gray

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