A candidate for the Minnesota Legislature who was arrested and jailed over the weekend is charged with felony domestic assault after an altercation in which he allegedly shoved his wife to the floor and choked her son.
Bradly Gerten, the Republican candidate for House District 51A and a Hennepin County probation officer, was charged Tuesday with one count of domestic assault of strangulation, which is a felony, and one count of domestic assault, a misdemeanor. Gerten, of Burnsville, was arrested by Burnsville police late Saturday night and booked into the Dakota County jail early Sunday morning.
According to a complaint filed by the Dakota County attorney’s office, police were called to Gerten’s home after an incident that allegedly began when Gerten went to the kitchen looking for pizza. Gerten’s wife said her son was in the kitchen when her husband came in and asked if there was any pizza left. When the son told Gerten to look for the pizza himself, Gerten allegedly grabbed him — and when his wife protested, he pushed her to the floor. The son and Gerten then struggled, with Gerten allegedly choking him while the son was lying on his back on the couch.
The son told police that Gerten kept his hand on his neck for several seconds, during which he had a difficult time breathing and felt as if he might lose consciousness.
Gerten had his first court date on Tuesday, and Dakota County District Judge Timothy McManus ordered him released on his own recognizance. Gerten will be back in court Dec. 14 and his trial is scheduled for March 13.
Gerten is running for the seat held by Rep. Sandra Masin, DFL-Eagan, who said Monday that her opponent’s arrest was troubling and that “domestic violence is a very serious issue.”
In a statement released Monday morning, House Speaker Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, said that domestic assault is “unacceptable to our party and our caucus” and added that “no [House Republican Campaign Committee] resources have been spent in this district to date, nor will they in the future.”
Gerten, who graduated from Burnsville High School in 1993, is retired from the Minnesota National Guard and was deployed to Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan, according to his campaign website. He also serves as a referee for youth sports.