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Man allegedly pulls gun, threatens murder of family over cellphone activation

Xavier Isaac Rodriguez

HANLEY FALLS — A 20-year-old man is facing multiple criminal charges in Yellow Medicine County after he allegedly pulled a gun on a couple and their 1-year-old son, threatening to kill them if they did not activate his cell phone.

Xavier Isaac Rodriguez, of Hanley Falls, is facing three felony charges of second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon, a felony charge of receiving stolen property, a felony fifth-degree drug possession charge, and one felony charge each for possessing a firearm and possessing ammunition as a convict of a previous violent crime.

He made his first court appearance Monday.

The criminal complaint on the charges alleges Rodriguez was upset that a man had turned his cell phone off. The man told police that Rodriguez was on his cell phone plan, but had not been paying his part of the cell phone bill.

Around 7 p.m. Friday, the complaint states, Rodriguez visited the couple at their home and tried to fight the man.

When the man would not fight back, Rodriguez allegedly took off his jacket and pulled a gun from his waistband, pointing it directly at the couple and their son.

He threatened the couple, saying he would come back to kill them “if his phone was not back on in five minutes,” according to the complaint.

He left with the gun and took off in a vehicle.

When the couple reported the alleged assault to authorities, they said they had also left their home, attempting to get out of the area before Rodriguez returned.

They told dispatchers that Rodriguez was currently chasing them in a blue Equinox.

With that information, Yellow Medicine County sheriff’s deputies stopped the suspect vehicle and apprehended Rodriguez.

Deputies obtained a search warrant for Rodriguez’s car and residence. There, they found multiple white oblong pills in the vehicle, and several rounds of ammunition and a black handgun in the residence.

A background check of the handgun found it had been stolen from Montevideo in 2010.

Court records show Rodriguez has a previous felony conviction of second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon from 2015.

Rodriguez is in custody in the Yellow Medicine County Jail on $300,000 conditional or $500,000 unconditional bail.

He is expected to make his next court appearance at a hearing April 25.