Sheriff: Verndale man shoots gun toward deputies in struggle

VERNDALE, Minn. — A 55-year-old rural Verndale man was arrested Saturday, Sept. 19, after firing his weapon toward deputies during a struggle to gain control of a handgun the suspect had in his possession.

The Wadena County Sheriff’s Office responded at 6:45 p.m. after receiving a 911 hang-up call on the 17000 block of 220th Street in Verndale. Upon arrival, deputies learned from family members the man was acting odd and they were concerned about him. The man became agitated with deputies and referenced a firearm while making threatening gestures towards deputies, a news release stated. Over the next hour, deputies attempted to negotiate with the man, who had shown a handgun by this point.

Negotiations began to break down, and deputies attempted to use a stun gun to subdue the man and gain control of the handgun, according to the release. After the stun gun deployment, the sheriff’s office reported a struggle ensued with the man and he was able to regain control of the handgun, firing a single shot while struggling with deputies. The shot narrowly missed all deputies and was lodged between two religious books under a nearby piece of furniture, the release stated.

The man was taken into custody without further incident and was evaluated by Tri-County Ambulance to check for any injuries. Nobody was severely injured in the incident and no law enforcement officers discharged their firearms.

The man is currently in custody at the Wadena County Jail, awaiting formal charges by the Wadena County Attorney’s Office.


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