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Hutchinson man accused of attacking Menards worker, officer

April 15, 2021 GMT

HUTCHINSON, Minn. (AP) — A Hutchinson man is accused of assaulting an employee of the local Menards store who asked him to wear a mask and then attacking a police officer with a hammer.

Hutchinson Police Chief Tom Gifferson says officers were called to the store Wednesday on a report that the man assaulted the employee with a piece of lumber after being asked to wear a mask to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Star Tribune reported.

The man left the store and was spotted by an officer in the parking lot of a nearby Walmart. When the officer tried to stop his vehicle, the man drove off with the officer in pursuit.

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The man later pulled over and when the officer made contact with him through the driver’s side window he took off with the officer hanging from the window, police said. Gifferson said the suspect hit the officer in the head with a hammer as they struggled.

The officer is hospitalized in stable condition, and the suspect was arrested, police said. The McLeod County Sheriff’s Office is investigating.