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Mille Lacs County deputy kills suspect in home invasion robbery attempt

Gabriel Chips, Thomas Corrales, and Justin Mitchell were arrested for their role in the break-in; their accomplice Jamison Anderson was killed by a Mille Lacs County deputy.

Gabriel Chips, Thomas Corrales, and Justin Mitchell were arrested for their role in the break-in; their accomplice Jamison Anderson was killed by a Mille Lacs County deputy.

A 20-year-old Minnesota man was shot and killed by a Mille Lacs County sheriff’s deputy Thursday night after he and three other masked men broke into a Vineland home, assaulted several people and fired a weapon.

Jamison Anderson, 20, of Vineland was killed by Deputy Daniel Mott. Mott, a 14-year veteran of the sheriff’s department, was put on administrative leave while the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) investigates.

The Mille Lacs County Sheriff’s Office and the Mille Lacs Tribal Police Department are jointly investigating the incident, according to a BCA press release.

A dispute between those two departments was the subject of a recent City Pages cover story about the county walking away from a 25-year policing agreement, leaving the 30-member tribal police force largely handcuffed from performing its duties.

According to the BCA, four men broke into a home at 17640 Ookweman Loop in Vineland with plans to commit a robbery at about 10:50 p.m. Thursday. Three wore masks and one brandished a sawed-off shotgun, confronting more than a dozen people in the home, assaulting several and firing a weapon at least once, the BCA said.

No one was injured by gunfire but several people sought cover in a bedroom, barricaded the door and called 911. This is where the tribal police would normally come in – perhaps with back-up assistance from the county – but instead three Mille Lacs County deputies arrived.

County deputies took two suspects into custody as they fled the home, and deputy Mott found a third suspect in a bedroom with a shotgun pointed at people. When he refused to drop the gun, Mott shot and killed him.

The other deputies entered the home and arrested the fourth suspect without incident. One person injured during the home invasion was treated at the scene. The BCA said there was no body camera or other video of the incident.  

Three suspects -- Gabriel Chips, 21, of Brainerd; Tommy Thomas Corrales, 31, of Bayport; and Justin Lee Mitchell, 34, of Onamia -- were booked into the Mille Lacs County jail on assault, burglary and robber charges:

When the BCA's investigation is done, the findings will be turned over to the Mille Lacs County Attorney’s Office for review.

Thursday's incident illustrates how tribal policing has changed. In the past, the tribal police would’ve responded to a call for help made from inside the home, but since the county ended the agreement in last summer, the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Police Department cannot enforce state law or investigate any crime that would be prosecuted through the county. They can only enforce tribal law – mostly civil, regulatory matters – over tribal members.

Owen Truesdell, spokesman for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, said the BCA's description of the events it “comports with the facts” of the case as he understands them. He added that Mille Lacs County Sheriff Brent Lindgren spoke at a band community meeting last week, and said the policing agreement was revoked by the county board, not him.

This month the tribal police were deputized by the federal Bureau of Indian Affairs, and now operate like federal agents, meaning they can respond to major crimes. But without an agreement with the county, they still have no jurisdiction over certain misdemeanors.

The Mille Lacs County Board is scheduled to vote Tuesday on whether to participate in mediation – which the band favors -- to try to break the law enforcement logjam.