MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Kanabec County Sheriff’s Office says a man is dead after he made threats and attacked a deputy in Mora Wednesday.
Shortly before 9 p.m., Kanabec County Sheriff’s Deputy Shana McIalwain responded to a residence on the 500 block of Watkins Street after a man called and said he intended to kill someone at the address.
Thirty-seven-year-old Robert Sullivan Christen, of Duluth, arrived shortly after the McIalwain arrived. The sheriff’s office says Christen drove up at a high rate of speed and crashed his vehicle into a tree on the front lawn.
Despite being ordered to stop, Christen continued to advance and then attacked McIalwain, repeatedly punching her in the head. She then shot Christen to stop him. He died at the scene.
“The deputy defended herself. I almost wish there hadn’t been a shooting, but by the same token with society today, you never know whether they’re carrying a knife or what,” neighbor Larry Bussinger said. “She did what she had to do, and I can commend her for that. You know, somebody had to lose their life which is not nice, but at least the rest of the people around here are safe.”
Bussinger and his wife, Velma, live on the next street and heard the gunshots.
“They had to do what they had to do. What else you going to do? Stand there and get shot?” Velma said.
McIalwain, a one-and-a-half-year veteran of the department, suffered injuries to the forehead and arm in the attack and was treated and released by paramedics. She has been placed on standard administrative leave.
Christen had a prior assault conviction. Investigators are not sure of the relationship between Christen and the homeowner, but they say two children live in the home.
The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating.