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East Grand Forks officer fends off knife attack

EAST GRAND FORKS--An East Grand Forks police officer emerged unsacathed after an intoxicated man he attempted to help attacked him with knife, according to authorities. Officer Eric Burman was dispatched to a mobile home on the 200 block of Mercu...

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EAST GRAND FORKS-An East Grand Forks police officer emerged unsacathed after an intoxicated man he attempted to help attacked him with knife, according to authorities.

Officer Eric Burman was dispatched to a mobile home on the 200 block of Mercury Drive at about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday for reports of an intoxicated man yelling at residents, according to a criminal complaint. When he arrived, he found Robert Theodore Simmons, 57, and offered to drive home.

When they arrived at Simmons' home on the 100 block of Venus Drive, Burman asked Simmons if he needed additional help and Simmons became agitated, stating that "he had killed numerous men," according to the complaint.

Then, Simmons reached into his pocket, pulled out a knife and lunged at Burman, court documents state. After a brief struggle, Burman was able to gain control of Simmons' hand and get him to drop the blade.
"Officer Burman did not sustain any injuries," said Det. Tony Hart. "He was able to subdue Robert and get the knife away."

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The weapon used was a folding knife with about a two-inch blade, Hart said.

Simmons was taken to the Riverview Hospital emergency room, where police say he continued to threaten people. After being cleared by medical personnel, he was booked into jail.
Simmons was charged with assault in the second degree, a felony punishable by up to seven years in prison. He made his initial court appearance Thursday morning.

Simmons was convicted of fifth degree domestic assault in 2010 and disorderly conduct in 2012, court records show.

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Robert Theodore Simmons

Related Topics: CRIME
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