October 6, 2022

MCHENRY, N.D. (Valley News Live) – A community is mourning the loss of an 18-year-old man from Grace City, North Dakota, as investigators look into what led up to a deadly crash. Foster County Deputies were called to a hit-and-run that happened in an alleyway near Johnston Street and Jones Avenue in McHenry, ND.
Court documents say at 2:35 Sunday morning, 41-year-old Shannon Brandt called 911 to report that he had hit a pedestrian because he was threatening him. Brandt told State Radio that the pedestrian was part of a Republican extremist group and that he was afraid they were “coming to get him.” The pedestrian has been identified in a GoFundMe page as 18-year-old Cayler Ellingson.
After visiting the scene where the incident happened, deputies went to Brandt’s house in Glenfield, ND, which is about 12 minutes from the crash scene. Brandt admitted to consuming alcohol before the incident, and stated he hit Ellingson with his car because he had a political argument with him. Brandt also admitted to deputies that he initially left the crash scene, then returned to call 911, but left again before deputies could arrive.
Court documents say just before the crash, Ellingson called his mom and asked if they knew who Brandt was. She said yes, and told her son she was on her way to pick him up. A short time later, court documents say Ellingson called his mom again to say that “he” or “they” were chasing him. It was after the second call that Ellingson could not be reached again.
Ellingson was pronounced dead at a Carrington Hospital. Brandt has been charged with criminal vehicular homicide and DUI. Court records show a judge set bail at $50,000.
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