Charges: Hutchinson man who assaulted officer, store worker dared police to shoot him

The man accused of assaulting a Hutchinson police officer and a Menard’s worker in a case that received national attention has been formally charged.

Luke Alvin Oeltjenbruns, 61, of Hutchinson, was charged with felony first-degree assault, two counts of felony second-degree assault, and felony fleeing police causing bodily injury.

Court documents say the alleged assaults began at Menard’s in Hutchinson when Oeltjenbruns refused to wear a mask while checking out.  An employee told police Oeltjenbruns tried to push his cart of merchandise through the checkout, then struck him with a furring strip when the worker grabbed the cart to stop him.

The employee again tried to stop Oeltjenbruns, who hit him five or six times more in the head and hand, says the complaint The worker claimed to have a headache after the alleged assault, and police noted a raised red mark on his forehead.

Police later located Oeltjenbruns’ vehicle and attempted a traffic stop, but he led police on a low-speed chase, according to the complaint. When his vehicle was stopped at a red light, Oeltjenbruns rolled down his window several inches as police informed him he was at gunpoint.  Oeltjenbruns allegedly replied that he didn’t care and dared officers to shoot him.

The complaint says Oeltjenbruns ignored commands to exit his vehicle and began driving again.  When he was surrounded by police vehicles at Highway 15 and Freemont Ave SE, he again refused to exit the vehicle.

Officer Steve Sickmann stepped up on the running board of Oeltjenbruns’ vehicle and attempted to reach through the window, but Oeltjenbruns grabbed Sickmann’s arm and closed the window on it, says the complaint.  He allegedly began driving back and forth, smashing into the surrounding squad cars until he was able to drive away at a high rate of speed, Sickmann still trapped in the vehicle.

The complaint says Sickmann was able to retrieve a rescue hammer and attempted to break the vehicle window, but Oeltjenbruns took the hammer and struck Sickmann in the head.

Oeltjenbruns was eventually arrested.

Sickmann was transported to the hospital and received eight metal staples for the wound on his head.  He also suffered a large abrasion on his arm that reached from his shoulder to his lower arm.

Oeltjenbruns remains in custody in the McLeod County Jail.

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