ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has released the identity of one of the law enforcement members involved inlast week at his St. Michael home following a nearly two-day standoff.
Gardas is charged with several felonies, including two counts of attempted murder and two counts of first-degree assault, following the standoff that spanned from the afternoon of June 21 until the evening of June 22.
The criminal complaint filed against him in Wright County states that Gardas had outstanding warrants against him, and law enforcement went to his residence on June 21 after he allegedly assaulted his wife and threatened his pastor with a handgun.
Gardas's wife and children had fled the home by the time it had been surrounded by law enforcement on June 21, but his 13-year-old son was still inside. His son was able to flee after an armored vehicle broke through the front door and chemical agents were fired inside.
Gardas is said to have fired at law enforcement on two separate occasions on the evening of June 21, almost striking a Wright County Sheriff's deputy in the process. He also threatened to shoot at surrounding homes if law enforcement didn't back away from his home.
Almost 24 hours later, law enforcement entered Gardas's home, and he was found hiding with a rifle under a blanket. He was then shot with a less-lethal round, but then got up, ran to a staircase and allegedly turned around and fired rounds at law enforcement. He was then shot in the chest.
Two members of law enforcement fired their rifles in that encounter: Wright County Sheriff's Sgt. Robert Gongol, and an undercover St. Cloud police officer, whom the BCA is not allowed to identify. That officer wounded Gardas.
After he was shot in the chest, Gardas allegedly still refused to surrender, and was struck with more less-lethal rounds and was tased before finally being arrested, and then airlifted to North Memorial Health hospital in Robbinsdale. No one else was hurt in the ordeal.
His bail was set at $5 million. The BCA is still investigating.
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