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Man faces charges for incident with gun and sheriff's deputies

WILLMAR -- Kenneth Alvin Christensen, 56, of Paynesville, made his first court appearance Thursday on three felony charges for allegedly pointing a gun at a sheriff's deputy Monday evening.

Christensen faces charges of use of deadly force against a peace officer, second-degree assault and terroristic threats. Unconditional bail was set at $75,000. His next appearance is Aug. 16 in Kandiyohi County District Court.

According to the complaint, Kandiyohi County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched around 5:45 p.m. Monday to a home in Irving Township regarding a suicidal party who was possibly armed with a gun. A woman had been at the home but left after Christensen allegedly threatened himself.

The woman met deputies at a location away from the home and reported that Christensen had threatened himself if he didn't get pain medication. She also reported he was addicted to pain killers, had taken all of his medication and hadn't had any for two days. She said he was going through withdrawals. She also said he had a loaded gun and a number of guns in the home.

Several deputies attempted to contact Christensen, who agreed to meet one deputy in front of his home. However, when one deputy approached the home, Christensen allegedly picked up a handgun and started to extend his arm with a sweeping motion to point the gun directly at the deputy. The deputy ran backwards and went around the corner of the home to safety.

With the assistance of the woman and others, deputies contacted Christensen via a cell phone and he walked out of the home and searched without incident.

Christensen was interviewed and admitted to making suicidal comments and being addicted to pain medication, but said that the comments were "more of a bluff" in an attempt to get more pills.

He also allegedly said that he hoped by brandishing the handgun, the officers would leave him alone.

Deputies located the handgun, a .22-caliber revolver, in the home and took the gun into evidence.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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