Sheriff: Teenage girl shot in retaliation for counterfeit money in drug deal

Crow Wing County investigators continue to seek the 2nd suspect.

View of Crow Wing County logo on a sheriff's trailer
Crow Wing County Sheriff

RURAL BRAINERD — A 16-year-old Brainerd girl suffered a gunshot wound in an apparent drug deal gone bad Thursday night, March 5.

The Crow Wing County Sheriff’s Office received a report of a teenage girl with a gunshot wound at 10:36 p.m. from the emergency department of Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd. An initial report indicated the shooting occurred within the city of Brainerd, but investigators later learned the incident took place at a home on the 15000 block of Ironwood Lane in Oak Lawn Township.

According to the sheriff’s office, investigators believe a group of teenagers purchased marijuana from the home using counterfeit money. When the two suspects involved in the sale discovered they were given counterfeit money, they fired multiple times at the vehicle as it fled the property, striking it two times and ultimately hitting the girl.

Sheriff’s deputies responded to the Ironwood Lane home and attempted to contact the suspects without immediate success. The Crow Wing County Tactical Response Team assisted investigators and was able to apprehend one of the suspects — an 18-year-old man — without incident. The other suspect — a teenage boy from Baxter — had already left the home and is still being sought by investigators for questioning.

During a search warrant of the residence, investigators from the Lakes Area Drug Investigative Division located over 2 pounds of marijuana, a large quantity of marijuana wax, multiple firearms and a large amount of currency.


“This incident is very troubling due to the use of firearms during a drug transaction,” stated Sheriff Scott Goddard in a news release. “I’m thankful that the victim only received minor injuries but this could have been so much worse. My investigators have done a great job tracking down those responsible for this senseless act and are actively working on locating the other suspect. This incident reinforces the fact that we need a bolstered response to drug distribution in this county and I am committed to increasing our already successful LADID presence in this county.”

Assisting the sheriff’s office in this investigation was the Brainerd Police Department and the Crow Wing County Unmanned Aircraft Systems Team, which assisted with aerial surveillance.

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