Moorhead man arrested after 9-hour police standoff accused of threatening to kill woman
MOORHEAD — A 35-year-old man appeared in court Thursday, May 2, on charges stemming from a nine-hour police standoff at a house in a neighborhood near Concordia College.
Blake Carl Fitzgerald, of Moorhead, faces felony charges of second-degree assault, threats of violence, false imprisonment and domestic assault, along with a misdemeanor count of domestic assault, court documents show.
At Thursday’s hearing, Clay County District Judge Tammy Merkins set Fitzgerald’s bail at $200,000 cash with no conditions and $100,000 with conditions, like abstaining from alcohol and surrendering any guns.
About 9 a.m. on Tuesday, April 30, Moorhead police were sent to 1423 5th St. S. after a woman called saying a man, later identified as Fitzgerald, threatened her and said he was going to shoot people, court documents show.
The victim told police Fitzgerald met with her on Monday, April 29, and told her he was going to Wisconsin to address some criminal charges and asked her to take back an earlier statement she gave police about a domestic assault, court documents stated.
When the victim said she wouldn’t recant her statement, Fitzgerald allegedly pushed her against a wall and tried to strangle her, court documents show. The victim said she then left messages with patrol officers taking back her statement.
Later on Monday, the victim again met with Fitzgerald in his vehicle and told him she requested a protection order, court documents show. Fitzgerald asked the victim to notify authorities to drop the order and then drove the vehicle to his home, court documents stated.
When at the home, Fitzgerald allegedly grabbed what appeared to be a gun and made statements about wanting to disappear and alleged threats against cops and others, court documents show. The victim told police she was able to calm Fitzgerald who put the gun away.
The victim told authorities that Fitzgerald didn’t let her leave the next morning on April 30 when she said she was going, and he allegedly assaulted her and made a threat against her life, court documents show.
Fitzgerald then chased after the victim as she tried to leave, but went back inside after he saw a pedestrian or vehicle arrive, court documents show.
The Red River Valley SWAT team responded to the area due to the alleged threats made by Fitzgerald and information that he had a gun.
According to information the SWAT team released on April 30, authorities made contact with Fitzgerald via telephone but Fitzgerald initially denied being at the house or having done anything wrong.
Fitzgerald surrendered himself to authorities about 6 p.m. after authorities deployed tear gas and he was taken into custody. Police searched the house and found a pistol style BB gun hidden in a wall in the garage where Fitzgerald was hiding.
Fitzgerald is currently facing several open cases in Oneida County, Wis, including three cases involving multiple misdemeanor counts of violating a domestic abuse order, Oneida County court records show.
He had a court hearing slated for April 30 in Wisconsin for a case in which he faces a felony charge of interfering with a custody order. Oneida County court records note a felony warrant was issued for Fitzgerald because he failed to notify the court of his address change.
Dispatch records show that between February and April police responded 10 times to Fitzgerald’s Moorhead address, including three times for a domestic incident and twice for a disturbance.
Fitzgerald is being held at the Clay County Jail. Court records did not list an attorney for him.