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Hudson man charged with attacking sex offender with ax

Brad Couet-Kamrath

Authorities allege a rural Hudson man on Tuesday attacked a sex offender for the second time since 2016 — this time going after a convict with an ax.

The suspect, Brad A. Couet-Kamrath, alleged broke down the door of a sex offender’s apartment, then struck him with the blunt end of an ax, according to a criminal complaint. Prosecutors charged Couet-Kamrath with three felonies in connection with the Nov. 21 incident: first-degree recklessly endangering safety, aggravated battery and bail jumping. He’s also charged with misdemeanor criminal property damage.

According to the complaint:

St. Croix County sheriff’s deputies were called at 9:27 a.m. to 1102 County Road A in Burkhardt, where a man, later identified as resident Brandon Langel, reported someone broke into his apartment and hit him in the back of the head with an ax. A deputy examined Langel’s head and found a 3-inch wound matching the approximate size of an ax’s blunt end. Langel told the deputy he was sleeping at the time of the assault.

The deputy went to another unit in the complex that appeared to have fresh damage on its exterior wall — including a hole similar in size Langel’s wound.

A man, described as loud and aggressive, answered the deputy’s knock on the door and stepped into the hallway. The man, later identified as Couet-Kamrath, had a bandaged hand, smelled of alcohol and told the deputy to take him to jail.

After bringing him to a squad car, the deputy returned to the room and found an ax inside the apartment with blood on the handle.

Though he didn’t initially talk with authorities about the incident, Couet-Kamrath told the deputy “I know this is already a felony but I want to point out I hit him with the dull side, not the sharp side of the ax” while being driven to jail.

Couet-Kamrath, who recorded a 0.29 blood-alcohol level at the jail, also made remarks about how nothing being done about sex offenders living in his building angered him.

John Kucinski, an attorney with the state’s public defender’s office, shed light on those remarks during Couet-Kamrath’s initial court appearance Wednesday. Kucinski alleged Langel had harassed Couet-Kamrath’s girlfriend and that he “couldn’t take it anymore.”

The incident was the second time Couet-Kamrath was charged with assaulting a sex offender at the complex. The first incident occurred Aug. 11, 2016, when he allegedly punched an offender Couet-Kamrath accused of leering at teenage girls. In that incident — for which he was charged with felony substantial battery — Couet-Kamrath allegedly punched a man with an open hand. A criminal complaint in that case states the man told Couet-Kamrath, “If you need to, go ahead,” just before the punch.

Couet-Kamrath was convicted of misdemeanor battery in that case and was sentenced to a year on probation.

St. Croix County Circuit Court Judge Eric Lundell set Couet-Kamrath’s cash bond at $5,000. He’s due in court again on Dec. 1.

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

(715) 426-1072
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