MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 22-year-old Apple Valley man has been charged in connection with a fatal shooting that took place in Burnsville Saturday.

Derrick Wallace Dahl faces one count each of manslaughter, reckless discharge of a firearm, intentionally pointing a gun at another and recklessly handling a gun in the shooting that killed 22-year-old Benjamin Allen Hanson of Welch, Minn.

According to the charges, Dahl and his friends, including Hanson, were cleaning several handguns. Apparently thinking it was unloaded, Dahl cocked a 45-caliber semi-automatic handgun, pointed it at Hanson’s head and pulled the trigger. The gun discharged and Hanson was shot in the head.

He was transported to Hennepin County Medical Center, where he died the following day.

Dahl told police that was the first time he’s ever handled a gun and admitted that he didn’t know a lot about them. Dahl said it was an accident and that he didn’t know the gun was loaded.

Dahl made his first court appearance Tuesday. His next court appearance is scheduled for Aug. 15.

Comments (61)
  1. luv ya kev says:

    OMG! He looks exactly like kevin!

    1. dan says:

      What are you trying to compensate for?? Lots of jabs at Kevin but no real point to your existence

      1. luv ya dan says:

        Well, maybe it is time to start mocking you because you are just as ignorant.

        1. dan says:

          My question is what has Kevin ever done to you? Isnt he entitled to his opinion on a story?

          1. luv ya dan says:

            kevin spreads falshoods and lies. Also he can’t be taken seriously because he has no grasp of the English language.

            1. dan says:

              So how does that effect you? There are plenty of people that comment on these sites that are way out there either on the Right or Left. Cant you just ignore his posts as you feel they are a waste of time anyways? Otherwise prove him wrong with a follow-up posts.

              1. luv ya dan says:

                I have done so many, many times. Then he wont respond to facts. So I just have fun in my spare time making fun of him. If you don’t like it, don’t be upset about it.

                1. MARK says:

                  “So how does that effect you? There are plenty of people that comment on these sites that are way out there either on the Right or Left. Cant you just ignore his posts as you feel they are a waste of time anyways?”

                  dan, have you considered taking your own advice? Why do you care if “luv ya kev” thinks this kevin person is an idiot?

  2. JamieinMN says:

    Aww man. This is why you do NOT touch a gun unless you have had proper training! They’re not toys FFS!

    1. JamieinMN says:

      You can’t just assume. You know how people are, especially boys and their toys. It’s possible that his friend was teaching him how to clean the gun, how to handle it, and this guy thought it would be funny.
      Unless you were there, you have NO IDEA what happened in that room.

      1. JamieinMN says:

        I REALLY hope you’re being sarcastic……….

        1. Jim says:

          Maybe if the guy was smoking crack at the time. Or had been recently kicked in the head by a horse. Or spent time inhaling paint chips as a child. But normal people do not point guns at other people and “accidentally” shoot them. The guy either did it on purpose or is too stupid for life.

          1. JamieinMN says:

            I think both YOU and Architect are much too stupid for life…..

          2. The Architect says:

            Calm down, Jamie. I didn’t call you a mongoloid dullard for your opinion, so there’s no purpose in calling me a name for mine.

            Take a pill, buddy. Life isn’t so bad that you need to get so upset.

        2. JamieinMN says:

          I’m not yo buddy guyyyyyy!

          1. The Architect says:

            Why not? Holding out for a better offer? 😉

            1. JamieinMN says:

              Hey, gotta keep my options open!

            2. JamieinMN says:

              Preferably someone who doesn’t think I suffer from Downs!

            3. Architect of Bullchittt says:

              chit Architect ,,,, we’d rather be friends of the Mn Shankmann …. just sayin’ fleabag, just sayin’

      2. Kate says:

        You forget that the rest of the world isn’t like you. Pay attention to the world around you. Some people haven’t learned yet.

    2. edward eubanks says:

      This is certainly not true as it happens plenty.

      Forty years ago, a 14 year old pointed a gun at my head and pulled the trigger. I got angry. Instead of putting the gn down, he pointed the gun at his brother and pulled the trigger. The gun discharged lodging a bullet in the arm of the 16-year old.

      I was 20 at the time and pretty disressed by the whole thing. I made a point to leave any company that was playing with firearms. Stupidity can be more dangerous than malice.

      1. Drunken Dissed Orderly says:

        That is absolutely unbelievable. I cannot fathom why someone would find that to be amusing. I do NOT get the motivation for this.

    3. Chris says:

      You are PATHETIC! Derek is the nicest boy I have ever known. He is literally a gentle giant. Don’t ever assume what you think you know. POS!!

      1. The Outdoorsman says:

        He may be the nicest, but he sure isn’t the brightest.

        No offense intended, but this was about the dumbest thing he could have ever done in his life.

        He has destroyed his life and his friend’s life by trying to be funny with a handgun, which is not technically possible. There is no humor to be found while handling firearms.

  3. DARREN says:

    WOw, It doesn’t matter. You never point a gun at anyone, even if your cleaning a gun or doing anything with it. Everyone knows that. I have never touched a gun and I even know that.

    Wonder if something else was involved? Alcohol?

    1. JamieinMN says:

      Exactly. Never ever ever. Even if it’s not loaded. It’s just not smart.

      1. em0886 says:

        I completely agree!! This clearly was an accident and I am sure he will be in his own personal hell for the rest of his life…..but like many people have said you never ever point a gun at someone…especially at their head….and especially when you have no idea what you are doing!! This is such a senseless tragedy, guns are not toys and people need to educated on how to properly handle them, clean them and store them!

  4. Harris Pilton says:

    He should have just stayed home and played World Of Warcraft.

  5. The Architect says:

    “Dahl and his friends, including Hanson, were cleaning several handguns. Apparently thinking it was unloaded, Dahl cocked a 45-caliber semi-automatic handgun, pointed it at Hanson’s head and pulled the trigger.”

    WRONG! This scenario has NEVER EVER played out this way in the history of mankind and of firearms. NEVER. Nobody gets together with their buddies and cleans handguns, and nobody cocks a handgun and points it at their buddy’s head and pulls the trigger. Nobody does that. I don’t believe this story for one solitary second.

    1. JustSayin says:

      Again, you talk too much. SHUSH YOU!

    2. Samantha says:

      All of you who are stupidly assuming this story is a lie or sham.. Are incorrect. I know Derek and Ben. They were the best of friends, guys find any reason to hang out even cleanig guns. Although I dont know the exact facts, I DO know this was an accident. A very terrible accident. My heart goes out to every person involved.. Please respect Ben and Dereks families by keeping your mouth shut! Prayers are needed for both parties. RIP Ben. Best of luck Derek, we love you!

    3. Sue says:

      Just because you can’t handle the concept doesn’t mean it isn’t real or can’t happen. Why are you assuming you know more than anyone else?

      1. The Outdoorsman says:


        I can accept that this was an accident, but only on the condition that it’s agreed that this person is probably the stupidest somgun alive.

        I’m sure he thought he was being funny by picking up the handgun, pointing it in his best friend’s face and pulling the trigger, blowing his face out the back of his head.

        I, personally, am missing the humor in it completely, and I have the feeling everybody else is too.

  6. Mr. Me says:

    the only time you point a gun at anyone is when you have the intent of pulling the trigger

  7. Troy P. says:

    People with guns kill other people.

  8. Morgs says:

    Tighter gun control would have stopped this.


    1. JamieinMN says:

      No it would not have. You can control ANYTHING and when you do, people want it more and they WILL get it. Just like drugs, alcohol, prostitution, GUNS.

      1. Ted says:

        I would think that if we made it harder to get guns, especially those not used for hunting, would reduce gun crimes. Yes, it will not stop it, it will prevent it. Not having gun control is to me making it too easy. Those who do not want gun control want absolutely no control over guns and those who want it do not claim they want to eliminate guns all together. I think the former needs to bend more and comprimise a little bit and lets make it harder to get guns for crime and keep guns for hunting.

        1. JustSayin says:

          You talk too much.

          1. Jim says:

            It doesn’t really say that the guy didn’t own a gun, only that he’d never handled one before. Maybe he just bought it? Or it was his friend’s gun?

            This is a good lesson. Friends shouldn’t let stupid friends handle firearms.

            1. The Architect says:

              I don’t think that’s a likely scenario.

              I agree 100% with your final statement in your comment. Someone died by not following that sound advice.

        2. Ted says:

          Architect, why is it that you need to trash everyone who disagrees with you? I thought I made some sense. I did not think it was stupid. And it was not least educated. Your comments here on WCCO can be most anoying.

        3. edward eubanks says:

          It is not the ownership of guns that is the problem. It is the availability. The guy did not need to be an owner to be a menace. Maybe TEd’s point is that if we had tighter controls on the possession and transportation of firearms, there would be less gun-related mayhem.

          I don’t believe Ted’s comment was the stupidest, least educated thing he could come up with. I wouldn’t even classify your post as the stupidest, least educated thing YOU could have come up with. However, if it was a race to duhsville, I’d have to give you the advantage.

          1. The Outdoorsman says:

            So the victim shouldn’t have been allowed to own a firearm either?

            Edward, what?

    2. Dave says:

      Why do people like you hate America and freedom and our constitution?

      1. MARK says:

        Why do Republicans insist on accusing people they disagree with of hating America and freedom? That’s such an incredibly terrible way to get anyone to agree with you. Why not refute some of Ted’s points instead of talking trash like a middle school-age child?

        1. jeff says:

          i have to agree with you mark. ad hominem arguements never help.

  9. Junior says:

    Its time to limit gun ownership….

    1. The Architect says:

      To whom?

      Most of the guns used in shootings aren’t legally owned anyway, so who would you be taking guns out of the hands of, Junior? Just curious.

  10. DPWG says:

    Wow what a stupid accident, Ive heard it time and time again when I was a kid “you don’t point guns at people” and then they drill it into your head at gun safety.
    Not only is his friend dead but its something he has to live with and play out over and over in his mind.
    I wonder why they still have him in custody, if this truly was an accident and others that were there said the same he should be on suicide watch in a hospital where he can receive some type of counseling instead of hearing a bunch of idiots throw it in his face all day.

  11. Spectre says:

    Only bitter (have no life) loser’s would inject politics into this….

  12. Ferris Lind says:

    YOUR A P.O.S

  13. only me says:

    RIP Ben!! YOur in a better place now. I assumed what happened to you was an accident and im sure you know that, but we cant take back time only live for the future! My Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family!! Spread your beautiful wings and fly…

  14. gonzo says:

    A needless tragedy. You cannot ever, even for a second, disregard the rules for safely handling firearms. Once you pull the trigger and the firing pin hits that primer, you can’t take it back.

  15. @architect says:

    You blow my mind Architect, you think no1 has ever done this before, what planet do you live on, people lay in the road and et run over does that seem like a good idea, people have 20beers and drive home is that a good idea, I bet you 100’s of times people have done this and I bet a few others have died this way, do you even own a computer? You only seem to post during work hours, What a great example you are, plays on computer while working, you help make the stereotype lazy americans fit so well. I can;t believe you’re married and have children I feel such pity for them.

  16. Sabrina says:

    RIP Ben, we all love you and miss you so much!

  17. Jordon says:

    Very Sad! Many mistakes were made, however i do not think that this shooting was intentional. I do think that there should be some strict regulations for handgun use in america. I don’t think that it was very smart to keep a loaded 45 caliber handgun out with friends over. He should have learned that in gun safety, never clean a loaded handgun, and especially never let someone with no prior gun experience pick up a loaded handgun. My deepest condolences to the family and friends involved / affected by this tragedy.

    @architect of bullchit / jamieinmn / love ya dan / etc..
    GROW UP! your petty little arguments don’t help the situation. No one cares about your opinion if you act like a child.

    1. JamieinMN says:

      Hmmmm I don’t recall trying to help the situation at all…….I’m just stating my opinions :- D We all have them. So YOU shut up.

  18. fred says:

    add this guy to the already way to long list of people so stupid…..they are extremely dangerous! we can expect a dozen or so new nanny laws because of this clown

  19. Jim S. says:

    Well, I just hope the last words I ever hear in this life aren’t, “duhhrrrrr…click”.

  20. Dave Blouin says:

    I worked with Ben at Apple Valley Ford for three years, and he was a wonderful person. I’ll remember him as much for his subtle sarcasm and his sneaking cigarettes on the clock as I will for him making me bust out laughing on a consistent basis.

    He wasn’t perfect, but he was by no means an intellectual slouch, and he certainly doesn’t deserve what happened to him (or to be mocked by internet trolls with no social life.)

    RIP Ben, and I sincerely hope there is an afterlife and you are enjoying yourself.

    – Dave Blouin

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