Fargo man charged with attempted murder after Radisson Hotel shooting

Henry Aiken
Henry Aiken (Cass County Jail)

FARGO — A Fargo man has been charged with several crimes, including attempted murder, in relation to a shooting in front of the Radisson Hotel last Friday.

Henry Isalee Aiken , 54, appeared Monday, Nov. 18, in Cass County District Court on the Class A felony, which carries a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison. He also was charged with a Class B felony of aggravated assault and three Class C felonies — terrorizing, reckless endangerment and unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon.

The charges stem from an early Friday, Nov. 15, shooting at the Radisson Hotel, 201 Fifth St. N. Officers responded to a report of a man with a gun and found Aiken “waving around a handgun with a green laser outside the entrance to the hotel,” charging documents allege.

Officer Joseph Vegel took cover behind a corner north of Aiken and told the suspect to drop the weapon, the court documents said. Instead of following orders, Aiken pointed his .38 caliber revolver at Vegel, with the green laser passing over the officer’s body, according to court documents.

Vegel considered shooting Aiken, whose body was partially concealed by a lobby structure, but he determined there was too much distance between himself and the suspect to get an accurate shot, court documents said.



Aiken fired his gun at Vegel, documents said.
“Officer Vegel stated he believed he could hear the sound of the bullet whizzing by him and said that his ears began ringing from the sound of the gunshot,” according to court documents. “Officer Vegel immediately retreated further back and reported never having been so scared in his life.”

Aiken then shot the window of the hotel lobby before jumping through it, documents said. He surrendered shortly after police entered the hotel, an incident report said.

Cass County Judge John Irby set cash bond for Aiken at $500,000, but not before Aiken disputed the charges against him. He told Irby he did not shoot at anyone but instead shot at a building.

If he posts bond, that would require that he waive extradition to North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, where there are warrants for his arrest.

Court documents do not mention Sgt. Matt Ysteboe, whose hand was seriously injured when his rifle accidentally discharged during the incident. Ysteboe was flown Friday to North Memorial Hospital in Robbinsdale, a Twin Cities suburb, for surgery, according to a Facebook post by the Fargo Police Department.

The surgery went well and Ysteboe is currently at home with his family while he recovers, the police department said Monday. He will learn more about his recovery and restrictions next week.

“Again, Sgt. Ysteboe and our department greatly appreciate the prayers and support our community has provided him,” the post said.

April Baumgarten joined The Forum in February 2019 as an investigative reporter. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, N.D., where her family raises Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at the University of Jamestown, N.D.
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