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Continued: Fleeing gunman meets his match

  • Article by: CHRIS HAVENS and MYRON P. MEDCALF , Star Tribune
  • Last update: August 25, 2007 - 11:07 PM

Nearby officers arrived at the scene, separated the men and used a Taser to subdue the suspect.

The suspect was listed in fair condition at Regions; he had also been shot earlier in the pursuit.

Shots fired and a chase

The ordeal began when Hudson police traced him to an apartment, where they tried to arrest the man on Friday night. He had been wanted for fleeing police during a traffic stop on Thursday, said interim Police Chief Eric Atkinson.

Authorities said the man had an extensive criminal history. State records show traffic arrests and charges of assault with a dangerous weapon. He hasn't yet been charged in connection with Friday's events.

The man had barricaded himself in a bedroom in the apartment, but came out with an assault rifle blazing. He got into a sport-utility vehicle and sped off.

Authorities fired back and wounded him, but he kept on going.

St. Croix County Sheriff's deputies pursued the suspect on I-94 across the St. Croix River and into Minnesota, where he turned north on Hwy. 95, then turned right and crashed into a street sign in front of the Bungalow Inn.

Washington County authorities set up roadblocks around the wooded neighborhood on the west bank of the St. Croix. Helicopters took to the air and officers were stationed in boats.

It appears the Klandermans' house, on 11th Street N., was the suspect's first stop. When the couple ran away, the suspect likely went down to the beach and ran north until he found stairs heading back up the cliff.

The suspect tried to break into one house on Old Toll Bridge Road but was unsuccessful and went next door to the Radtkes.

The hours of terror left thankful residents reflecting on their fear and good fortune.

"It was definitely a random act, but I think our sheriff did an amazing job," said Lakeland Mayor Brian Zeller.

"Our family wants to thank all of the law enforcement and medical personnel for their great work," the Radtkes said in a statement. "We're also grateful for the support of family and friends." Their children were unharmed.

A Hudson officer suffered minor injuries when shattered glass cut his right arm during the shootout.

"I feel like everything went just right," Leland Klanderman said. "For us anyway."

chavens@startribune.com • 651-298-1542 mmedcalf@startribune.com • 651-298-1546

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