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Deputy shot in Mahnomen is 'doing very well'

Christopher Dewey

FARGO N.D. - MeritCare doctors said a sheriff's deputy shot Wednesday in a confrontation in Mahnomen has begun responding to verbal commands and will spend several months recovering.

"He's doing very well considering his injuries," one doctor said during a news conference this afternoon.

Christopher Dewey, 26, remains in critical but stable condition following two surgeries that lasted roughly four hours Wednesday at Fargo's MeritCare Hospital, where he was airlifted after being shot twice just after 7 a.m.

Doctors say Dewey is aware of his surroundings and they remain "cautiously optimistic" about his recovery.

Dewey showed improvement in his condition overnight, although doctors say they still don't know the extent or type of brain injury he suffered after being shot on the right side of the head.

During Wednesday's surgery, doctors cleaned up bone fragments and damaged brain tissue while trying to reduce swelling. No work was done to repair the brain or bone fractures.

Dewey will need at least one more surgery and likely undergo months of rehabilitation once he leaves the hospital.

Dewey responded to doctors' commands with the right side of his body, while family members reported that they noticed movement on the deputy's left side.