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Halvorson charged in shooting at Pioneer offices

BEMIDJI – A Bemidij man incarcerated in the St. Cloud prison was charged last week for allegedly shooting at the Bemidji Pioneer office building.

Edward Michael Halvorson, 38, has been charged with felony reckless discharge of a firearm in a municipality. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of two years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Halvorson now is serving a 64-month sentence for felony dangerous weapons – drive-by shooting toward a person, occupied motor vehicle or occupied building. He was sentenced July 2.

The Bemidji Pioneer office, 1320 Neilson Ave. SE, was twice damaged by bullets in early 2011. No one was injured.

The first shooting occurred at about 12:45 a.m. Jan. 1, 2011. Employees working inside the building reported hearing gunshots to police, according to the criminal complaint filed against Halvorson. Three bullets were recovered and turned over the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

In December 2011, Halvorson was arrested after a home on the 3100 block of Mill Street Northeast was damaged in a drive-by shooting. The Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office through that investigation leaned that Halvorson had a 38-caliber Smith & Wesson revolver in his possession on Jan. 1, 2011, according to the criminal complaint.

The revolver was located and brought to the BCA lab for analysis.

It was determined on May 23 that the revolver had fired the bullets that were recovered from the Bemidij Pioneer, according to the complaint.

Two Beltrami County sheriff’s deputies went to the St. Cloud prison on July 24 to interview Halvorson. He admitted that he had the revolver in his possession, according to the complaint.

When asked if he had shot at the Pioneer, Halvorson said, “I don’t know. I can’t tell you. I can’t tell you what happened. The gun was in my possession,” according to the complaint. He then stated he was drinking heavily at the time as he was going through a divorce.