Algona police officer killed on duty

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(ABC 6 News) – Co-workers, friends and family are grieving the loss of an Algona police officer who died in the line of duty Wednesday night.

Police say 33-year-old Officer Kevin Cram was on patrol duty when he went to arrest a man with an active warrant around 8 p.m.

Cram headed to a location where he thought the suspect, 43-year-old Kyle Ricke, might be, and told Ricke he was under arrest.

That’s when police say Ricke opened fired, killing Cram, before taking off and sparking an hours long manhunt.

An ambulance took Officer Cram to Kossuth Regional Health Center in Algona where he was pronounced dead.

Meanwhile officers from other agencies, including Mason City, were sent to arrest Ricke.

Mason City Police Chief Jeff Brinkley says these are the risks of the job, but when an officer dies, it’s still hard on everyone.

“Situations like this help you confront you’re own mortality, and I think because of that connection that can make it hard for us sometimes,” said Brinkley.

Ricke was arrested near Sleepy Eye, Minnesota around 11:50 p.m. He’s being held in Brown County jail until he is transported back to Kossuth County, where he’ll face a first-degree murder charge.

Law enforcement is a small but close-knit community in Iowa, and a loss like this is felt by everyone who knew Cram.

At a press conference Thursday, Department of Public Safety Commissioner Stephen Bayens said the fallen officer died a hero.

“Algona police officer Kevin Cram died a hero. The Cram family have long been called to a life of public service in this community, and have shown time and again that selfless dedication,” said Bayens. “Kevin Cram was an outstanding police officer, but he was much more than that. More importantly, Kevin Cram was a dad, he was a husband, he was a son, he was a friend.”

Cram served on the Algona Police Department for eight years, but before that started his law enforcement career with the Nora Springs Police Department.

He worked closely alongside Police Chief Jessie Dugan, who considered Cram a great friend and officer who served his community with pride and compassion. Dugan says Cram will be deeply missed by all.

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is ordering flags to be flown at half-mast in Cram’s honor.