By Nicole Silverio
A North Dakota man arrested for fatally running over a teen he allegedly believed was a “Republican extremist” has been released from custody, the Stutsman County Jail confirmed to the Daily Caller.
Shannon Brandt, 41, was taken into custody and resided at the Stutsman County Jail on criminal charges connected to the death of 18-year-old Cayler Ellingson in a Sunday hit-and-run. The jail told the Daily Caller via phone call that Brandt had posted his $50,000 bond and was released as of Wednesday afternoon.
Foster County deputies were called to an alleyway at around 2:35 a.m. after Brandt notified them he had struck a teen with his vehicle, Valley News Live reported. He allegedly told authorities he believed Ellingson was part of a “Republican extremist” group that he feared was “coming to get him.”
Before the alleged incident, Ellingson reportedly called his mother asking if she knew who Brandt was. The mother knew him and had been on her way to pick up her son in the town of McHenry, Fox News noted. The 18-year-old then called his mother back, informing her that “he” or “they” was chasing him, according to Valley News.
Jail confirmed to me that Shannon Brandt, who reportedly confessed to killing a North Dakota teen because the 18yo victim was “part of a Republican extremist group,” posted bond and is back on the streets.
Since his release, it appears Brandt started scrubbing his social media. pic.twitter.com/HAIbprHPpP
— Mia Cathell (@MiaCathell) September 21, 2022
“Brandt admitted to striking the pedestrian with his car because he had a political argument with the pedestrian and believed the pedestrian was calling people to come get him,” the court documents said, cited by Fox News. “Brandt admitted to leaving the scene of the incident and returning shortly after where he called 911.” (RELATED: Man Reportedly Admits To Running Down, Killing Teen He Believed Was ‘Republican Extremist’)
The suspect told authorities he had consumed alcohol and hit the teen after the two engaged in a political argument, Valley News reported. Brandt then reportedly left the scene before returning and calling 911. Police charged Brandt for driving-under-the-influence (DUI), according to Fox News. A breathalyzer test later allegedly showed Brandt as having a blood-alcohol level over the legal limit of 0.8.
Ellingson was rushed to Carrington Hospital and was pronounced dead, according to Valley News.
President Joe Biden labeled “MAGA Republicans” and supporters of former President Donald Trump as “extremists” who pose a threat to democracy during a speech in Philadelphia earlier in September