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Danvers man who assaulted police officer faces charges today

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BENSON - A rural Danvers man is expected to be charged today in Swift County on multiple drug-related charges and for assaulting a police officer following a Monday night incident in Benson.

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The officer was grabbed, kneed, kicked and struck in the chest multiple times before he was able subdue the assailant.

"This case illustrates the dynamic environment that our officers work in" stated Benson Police Chief Jim Crace in a press release.

"What is most important to me as the Chief is that my officer was not seriously injured and the suspect was taken into custody without being injured as well," he said.

According to Crace, Ryan Michael Aust, 33, is being held in the Kandiyohi County Jail on felony charges of sale of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance, assault on a peace officer, gross misdemeanor charges of driving under the influence of a controlled substance, driving after cancellation - inimical to public safety and a misdemeanor charge of fleeing a peace officer.

The charges stem from an incident around 6 p.m. Monday when police investigated a report of a driver passed out behind the wheel of a vehicle in the 1900 block of Countryside Drive.

Aust was incoherent and visibly shaking and trembling, leading the officer to believe Aust was under the influence of narcotics. When he was later able to get out of the vehicle Aust admitted he had methamphetamine in his pocket. After being told he was under arrest, Aust fled on foot.

The officer chased and tackled Aust as he attempted to enter an apartment building. Aust resisted the officer by grabbing uniform shirt and badge while kneeing and kicking the officer, according to the press release. He then started to run up the stairs of the apartment.

The officer once again tackled him in an attempt to take him into custody and again, Aust started kicking at the officer, striking him multiple times in the chest.

Aust struggled free from the officer's grasp once again and started to run up the stairs.

Once Aust reached the flat surface of the hallway the officer shot him with the Taser.

Aust fell to the floor of the hallway and the officer was able to gain control of him. Because his handcuffs had been lost in the struggle, the officer radioed for assistance and a Swift County Deputy responded to help secure the prisoner.

While waiting for assistance, Aust became unresponsive once again, as he had been behind the wheel of the vehicle.

Burton radioed for an ambulance, but Aust woke up and was able to walk out to the street. He was transported to Swift County Benson Hospital by the Benson Ambulance Service and later transferred to St. Cloud Hospital.

During a search of Aust officers 13 baggies that were filled with meth.

A search of the vehicle yielded more empty baggies, some that contained meth residue, and other paraphernalia, including a digital scale. There were also three cellular phones and a list of law enforcement radio frequencies in the vehicle.

"Officers have to constantly be on their toes; aware of what is going on, or they are liable to get hurt," said Crace, who praised Burton for how he handled the situation. "As officers, we do not encounter these types of altercations on a daily basis; however, we have to train for it and be prepared for something like this at any moment."

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