‘Kevin Cram died a hero’ - Police officer fatally shot in Algona, IA
ALGONA, Iowa (KTIV) - Authorities have confirmed a Northern Iowa police officer has died after being shot Wednesday night.
During a news conference Thursday morning, Iowa Department of Public Safety Commissioner Stephan K. Bayens identified the officer as 33-year-old Kevin Cram of the Algona Police Department. Authorities said Officer Cram had been working in law enforcement for ten years. He served at the Nora Springs Police Department from 2013 to 2015 and had been serving at the Algona Police Department since 2015.
”The Cram family have long been called to a life of public service in this community, and have shown time and again that selfless dedication.” said Bayens during the news conference. “Kevin embodied that, and was an outstanding officer here at the Algona Police Department, and in many ways was the bedrock of this police department.”
The man accused of the fatal shooting, 43-year-old Kyle Lou Ricke of Algona, has been charged with the first-degree murder of Officer Cram.
Mitch Mortvedt, the Assistant Director for the Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation, says it all started at about 7:53 p.m. Wednesday while Cram was on patrol in Algona. Mortvedt says at that time Cram was made aware of an active arrest warrant for Ricke. The warrant was for harassment in Palo Alto County, Iowa.
According to Mortvedt, Cram knew of a possible location for Ricke and went to the 1100 block of South Minnesota Street in Algona. Once there, Cram reportedly found Ricke and told him he was going to be placed under arrest. Once told this, Ricke allegedly shot Cram.
Shortly after the shooting, authorities say Cram was found by other officers and local emergency responders. He was taken to a hospital in Algona where he was pronounced dead. Cram’s body was sent to the State Medical Examiner to undergo an autopsy.
“Algona Police Officer Kevin Cram died serving his community. Algona Police Officer Kevin Cram died because he answered the call to serve. Algona Police Officer Kevin Cram died because he chose to be a beacon of light. Algona Police Officer Kevin Cram died because he was willing to stand between the gap of good and evil. Algona Police Officer Kevin Cram died a hero,” said Bayens.
Mortvedt said Ricke was found just before midnight about 100 miles north of Algona, in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota. He was taken into custody “without incident” and is being held at the jail in Brown County, Minnesota. Ricke is expected to be extradited at a later date.
“Our thoughts and prayers are for the family, friends, Algona Police Department and community of Algona, Iowa, with heartbreaking news of the Algona Police Officer who was shot and killed in the line of duty last night,” the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a post on X, formerly Twitter.
KCCI reported Ricke was in court hours before the Wednesday night shooting.
He was charged with third-degree harassment after sending dozens of text messages and trying to call his ex multiple times within a two-hour span on Aug. 23, according to court documents.
An officer reportedly told Ricke not to contact the woman again or he’d be charged with harassment. The woman told police Ricke had sent her more text messages and emails just four days later.
Officers said Ricke admitted to contacting the woman.
He was charged with third-degree harassment on Aug. 28 but bonded out of the Kossuth County Jail the next day.
Flags at Half-Staff
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds has ordered all flags in the state to be lowered to half-staff to honor Officer Cram.
The order says flags should be lowered at sunrise Friday, Sept. 15, until sunset.
Flags will be flown at half-staff on all public buildings, grounds and facilities throughout the state.
10 years since the death of Officer Jamie Buenting
Officer Cram was killed Wednesday night, Sept. 13. Ten years earlier, on that same day, another Iowa police officer was shot and killed in the line of duty.
On Sept. 13, 2013, Rockwell City Police Officer Jamie Buenting was part of a tactical team responding to a standoff. They were trying to serve a warrant on a suspect accused of assault. That’s when, authorities say, the suspect fired a high-powered rifle from inside his home, hitting Buenting.
In May of 2014, Buenting’s name was added to the Peace Officer Memorial in Des Moines and the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, in Washington, D.C.
The man, who shot, and killed Buenting was tried for murder, convicted, and sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.
KCCI and KCRG contributed to this article.
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