Man admits to killing ‘Republican’ teen after argument but is released on $50K bail
The North Dakota man admitted to fatally hitting the teenager with his car after the two had a ‘political argument’
A North Dakota man admitted to fatally hitting a teenager with his car after the two had a “political argument.” He spent just days in jail before posting a $50,000 bond.
Shannon Brandt, 41, was arrested Sunday after he told first responders’ that “he struck the pedestrian because the pedestrian was threatening him,” according to a probable-cause affidavit acquired by Fox News Digital.
“Brandt stated that the pedestrian called some people and Brandt was afraid they were coming to get him,” the document states. “Brandt admitted to State Radio that he hit the pedestrian and that the pedestrian was part of a Republican extremist group.”
Around 2:35 a.m. on Sunday, Brandt allegedly killed 18-year-old Cayler Ellingson by hitting him with his SUV in an alley in McHenry, North Dakota, according to a news release posted by the North Dakota Highway Patrol.
Brandt initially fled the scene then returned and called police before leaving a second time, according to the highway patrol and CNN.
Brandt was arrested at his home and booked into jail where a breath test registered that his blood alcohol content was above the legal limit, according to the probable-cause document.
Shortly before the incident Ellingson called his mother to ask for a ride home and to ask if the family knew Brandt. A short while later he called a second time to say “‘he’ or ‘they’ were chasing him.” Ellingson’s mother said she couldn’t reach her son after the second call.
First responders found Ellingson with critical injuries. He was rushed to a nearby hospital but succumbed to his injuries shortly after and was pronounced dead.
Brandt was booked into Stutsman County Jail on charges of vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of an accident. On Monday, he told a judge he didn’t understand the differences in the charges, according to local news video footage.
Brandt argued the bail was too high because he was not a flight risk.
“I have a job, a life and a house and things that I don’t exactly want to see go by the wayside — family that are very important to me,” he said.
Ellingson’s parents told police they know Brandt but do not believe the teen did.
Brandt has not yet entered a plea and is due in court Oct. 11, according to court records. If convicted, he faces a minimum of 10 years in prison.