The son of U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., was taken in custody Wednesday in connection with the police pursuit of a stolen vehicle that ultimately resulted in the death of a sheriff’s deputy.
In a personal statement on his Senate website, Cramer said his 42-year-old son, Ian, “was involved in a police chase which resulted in an accident that killed an officer.”
The senator said his son “suffers from severe mental disorders which manifest in severe paranoia and hallucinations” and was with his mother, Kris, when he insisted on going to visit his brother Ike, who died in 2018.
Cramer said his wife took their son to the Sanford Health emergency room in Bismarck, but when she got out of the car, he jumped into the driver’s seat and drove off.
“Our daughter was able to track the car through Kris’ cell phone and lead officers to him in Mercer County, ND. We don’t have more details right now but will work with authorities to properly inform the public,” Cramer wrote in the statement.
North Dakota Highway Patrol reported that the Bismarck Police Department was notified of a stolen SUV being driven by Ian Cramer, according to local news outlet KFYR. He was located in Hazen, North Dakota, by the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office, but when deputies approached him, he fled in the vehicle and a pursuit began.
During the chase, Cramer veered out of the lane and crashed head-on into an unoccupied Mercer County sheriff’s patrol vehicle that was parked on a roadside approach with its emergency lights active, per KFYR.
A Mercer County deputy, who has not yet been identified, was standing behind the patrol vehicle preparing to deploy a tire deflation device in an attempt to end the pursuit when it was hit. The impact of the crash was so strong that it pushed the patrol vehicle into the deputy and killed him, the outlet reported.
Cramer was taken into custody and transported to the Sakakawea Medical Center in Hazen before he was taken to the McLean County Detention Center in Washburn.
Sen. Cramer continued his statement by saying his family grieves the loss of the deputy. He also asked for prayers for healing for his son.
“I will take the first flight I can to be with our family as we grieve what has happened. We grieve especially for the family of the hero who tried to help Ian, and we pray for our gracious God to show up as He always does in tragedy. We ask the public for prayers for the lost officer’s family and colleagues who serve us every day and are grateful for all they do for us,” the senator wrote. “We also ask God for healing for Ian. We love him and hurt deeply.”
North Dakota Highway Patrol is investigating the crash and charges against Ian Cramer are pending.
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