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North Dakota Man Admits to Running Over and Killing Teenager for Allegedly Being Part of a Republican 'Extremist Group'

A 41-year-old North Dakota man has admitted to intentionally running over and killing a teenager, claiming that it was because he was involved with a “Republican extremist group.”

The incident took place at approximately 2:30 a.m. on September 18, in McHenry.

In the moments before his death, Cayler Ellingson, 18, called his mother for help because Shannon Brandt, 41, was chasing him in his SUV.

Ellingson was on foot after leaving a street dance that he had just attended.

The teenager asked his mother if she knew the man, which she did, but she does not believe that her son knew him, according to a report from the Grand Forks Herald.

By the time the mother arrived at the scene, Ellingson had been killed.

Brandt had called 9-1-1 and confessed that he intentionally ran over Ellingson. He told the police that they had got into an argument and that the teenager was part of a “Republican extremist group.”

According to law enforcement, Brandt was drunk at the time of the killing.

“We do not know of any witnesses. We are still making attempts to interview potential witnesses from the street dance, people that were present prior to the crash happening,” North Dakota Highway Patrol Capt. Bryan Niewind told the Herald.

Cayler Ellingson

On Monday, Brandt was charged with vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of a deadly accident. The police department told the paper that “more serious” charges may be added later.

The judge ordered Brandt held on $50,000 bail, which he objected to — citing his house, job, and family.

“I have a job, a life and a house and things I don’t want to see go by the wayside — family that are very important to me,” Brandt said during the hearing.

If convicted, Brandt faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a likely minimum of ten, due to a prior DUI conviction.

A GoFundMe to help the Ellingson family cover funeral expenses and other costs has already raised nearly $5,000.

“Cayler has went to heaven and will be missed by his Mom, Dad, Brother, Uncles, Aunts, cousins many Family and Friends,” the fundraiser’s description reads. “With this being said I would like to set a goal to help Sheri, Cole and Chase with Funeral expenses and anything to help them through this whole grieving process.”

Timcast has reached out to the police department to ask if there are any potential charges related to the political nature of the attack. We will update this article if a response is provided.

UPDATE: The headline of this story was changed shortly after publishing for clarification purposes.

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