Suspect in Iowa deputy’s shooting arrested after manhunt
Coggon, Iowa – A Chicago man who allegedly shot and wounded a sheriff’s deputy at an Iowa gas station and then evaded an extensive manhunt for hours has been arrested, a sheriff said Monday.
Linn County Sheriff Brian Gardner said 36-year-old Stanley Donahue was taken into custody Monday afternoon just north of Coggon, Iowa, where the shooting took place during an armed robbery at a Casey’s General Store on Sunday night. He said that additional details would soon be released.
“Outstanding efforts by multiple agencies resulted in this person being taken into custody without further violence,” Gardner said. “This is cooperative law enforcement at its finest.”
Gardner called it a “tragic and needless shooting that resulted in serious injuries to one of our deputies who was merely doing his job to protect the citizens of Linn County.”
Gardner said that the deputy, whom he didn’t immediately identify, was hospitalized at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in stable condition. He said Sunday night’s shooting was the first of one of his office’s deputies since 1973.
The deputy responded within minutes to a report of an alarm at 10:19 p.m. Sunday at the Casey’s store in Coggon, a town of 700 people about 25 miles (40 kilometers) north of Cedar Rapids, the sheriff said.
Upon entering the store’s front door, the deputy was met by an armed suspect who was trying to leave. The suspect fired a handgun at the deputy, who was struck by multiple rounds. The wounded deputy was flown to the hospital in Iowa City for treatment.
Donahue allegedly fled in a van at a high speed and was pursued by another deputy before crashing into a bridge under construction on the north edge of Coggon city limits, the sheriff said.
Donahue allegedly fled on foot, and deputies used a search dog to track him north and east of the Coggon area before losing track. Officers from several local, state and federal agencies were assisted by dogs and a state airplane in their search, scouring cornfields and ditches but failing to find him for hours.
Authorities had asked people who live near Coggon to stay inside, lock their doors and vehicles and call police if any of their vehicles are missing.
Casey’s spokesperson Katie Petru said no employees were injured during the robbery and shooting. She said the company was assisting authorities “during this ongoing investigation and continued search for the suspect.”
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the deputy who was shot during this horrific event,” she said. “We are also focused on our team members and ensuring they have the support they need.”
Coggon Mayor Heather Beeh said residents were worried overnight as the manhunt continued.
“It was just a lot of waiting and you never know what’s going to happen,” she said.
The shooting added to an unusually violent year for Iowa law enforcement officials.
In March, inmates at the Anamosa State Penitentiary used hammers to beat to death a correctional officer and a prison nurse during a failed escape attempt, in the worst prison attack in decades. In April, Iowa State Patrol Sgt. Jim Smith was fatally shot by a man who had barricaded himself inside his Grundy Center home, becoming only the second state trooper shot and killed in the line of duty since 1936.