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Watertown shooting suspect apprehended at Winsted cemetery

May 5, 2008

By Ryan Gueningsman

Authorities spanned several counties Thursday looking for shooting suspect Ryan Carl Lindeen, 44, and found him in the Winsted Public Cemetery around 3:30 p.m.

Lindeen is the suspect in a shooting incident that took place northwest of Watertown at a residence on Highway 25, just west of Watertown Public Schools.

A 911 call was received about a shooting at a residence at 6:21 a.m. Thursday morning, and officers who responded found an adult female who had been shot twice.

Deputies learned that Lindeen came to the home early Thursday morning, where there was a dispute and struggle over a .22 caliber rifle, according to the Carver County Sheriff’s Office.

At some point, the gun discharged, and the female was struck in the upper arm and lower leg. She was transported to an area hospital with non-life threatening injuries, and has since been released.

Carver County Chief Deputy Bob VanDenBroeke said Thursday afternoon investigators were still trying to establish the relationship between the two, but added the relationship is not spousal.

Prior to police arriving at the scene, Lindeen fled in a vehicle described as a green Saturn. He left the residence southbound on Highway 25, and authorities believed he took a .22 caliber rifle and a handgun with him.

Once authorities determined who the suspect was, an “attempt to locate” was issued for Lindeen.

Late Thursday afternoon, VanDenBroeke said he learned Winsted Police Chief Mike Henrich had apprehended the suspect in the area of the Winsted Cemetery.

He said the next steps were impounding the vehicle, executing a search warrant on it, and seeing if evidence inside of it matches up with that collected at the residence.

Henrich said his office received a call about a suspicious vehicle that had been sitting in the cemetery with no one around at about 3:15 p.m.

“Here, a guy was just paying attention to a car, and wanted it checked on, not to be nosy, but because he was concerned,” Henrich said. “Nine times out of 10 it turns out to be nothing, but look when it turns out to be something.”

When Henrich approached the vehicle, he realized it was the suspect vehicle from the shooting incident. He said he could not see anyone inside of the vehicle, but when he got closer to it, he saw a man sprawled out across the front seat.

Henrich said his initial concern was the man may have inflicted harm upon himself, but the man moved, and Henrich said he cooperated very well once approached.

“It went without incident,” Henrich said. Henrich later received assistance from the McLeod County Sheriff’s Office, and the Lester Prairie and Howard Lake police departments.

Watertown Schools Superintendent Karsten Anderson said the school district locked all exterior doors, and kept children inside due to the close proximity of the shooting to the school.

“Certainly, whenever there is an incident like this, we typically take these kinds of steps,” Anderson said, adding the school was in contact with the sheriff’s office, and felt the schools were not in danger.

VanDenBroeke said charges of attempted homicide may be filed, but said that’s up to the Carver County Attorney.

“We are grateful for all the assistance received from the media, the public and from our law enforcement partners” said Carver County Sheriff Byron “Bud” Olson.

The Carver County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate the incident. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Carver County Sheriff’s Office at (952) 361-1231.