Investigation into man shot to death by deputies in Vadnais Heights is ongoing

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension continues its investigation into the shooting death of a man who was killed by Ramsey County Sheriff’s deputies during an April 16 confrontation. 

Though the deputies involved were initially placed on leave, according to the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office, they have been placed back on duty. 

The shooting, which occurred in the 3200 block of Fanum Road around 9:30 p.m., stemmed from a confrontation between 47-year-old Darren Robert Jahnke and deputies, according to a BCA press release. 

The release says Jahnke was shot by a deputy after he allegedly disarmed another deputy.

“The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension understands the urgency of this case and is proceeding as rapidly as possible without compromising the integrity of the investigation,” Jill Oliveira, a BCA public information officer, said this month.

With the police killings of Jamar Clark in Minneapolis and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights in 2015 and 2016, the agency in recent years has investigated its share of police shootings.

In addition to the investigation into Jahnke’s death, the BCA is currently investigating the shooting death of Minneapolis resident Justine Damond, who was shot by a Minneapolis officer in mid-July, an event that triggered the resignation of Janee Harteau, former Minneapolis police chief. 

“Once our investigation is completed, the BCA will present its findings to the county attorney for review,” Oliveira said. 

 

What happened?

According to the BCA, deputies Sara Naglosky and Andre Rongitsch, who, at the time, had been with the department for four months and 12 years, respectively, were on routine patrol in the area of Interstate 694 and Highway 61 when they spotted an RV and a car parked at 3250 Fanum Road. They deemed the situation “suspicious.”

Upon further inquiry, the deputies found a woman inside the car and a man inside the RV. 

Once additional deputies arrived, identified by the BCA as Lisa Daly and Doug Haider, all four entered the RV.

During a confrontation inside the RV, Rongitsch shot Jahnke after he “disarmed one of the deputies,” the BCA said.

“The four deputies immediately rendered first aid and requested an ambulance,” the release said. Jahnke was taken to Regions Hospital in St. Paul and pronounced dead from a gunshot wound.

According to the release, the woman occupying the car was interviewed and released. 

The deputies, who were not wearing body cameras, were not harmed and were all placed on standard administrative leave.

Along with Arden Hills, Shoreview and Little Canada, Vadnais Heights is one of several cities that contracts for police services from the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office.

 

Jesse Poole can be reached at jpoole@lillienews.com or at 651-748-7815


 

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