Oakdale man charged with shooting at law enforcement, officers exchanging gunfire identified

·2 min read

An Oakdale man accused of firing several shots out of his apartment window was charged Wednesday with shooting at police.

Shawn Fairley Codinack, 32, shot at police on Monday and said he wanted to "meet God" from his third-floor apartment window at the 900 block of N. Greenway Avenue just across from Tartan High School, according to the complaint filed in Washington County District Court. Codinack is charged with three counts of first-degree assault against a peace officer.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) is investigating four officers who fired back. All are on administrative leave. No one was struck by gunfire in the exchange, according to a news release from the BCA.

The BCA said the officers who fired their weapons during the exchange are: Deputy Randy Helms of the Washington County Sheriff's Office, who has been in law enforcement for 12 years; Sgt. Omar Maklad of the Woodbury Police Department, who has been with law-enforcement for 18 years, and Officer Kevin Merkling with the Oakdale Police Department, who has been in law enforcement for 17 years. Officer Robert Boleen of the Woodbury Police Department and who has been in law enforcement for six years, fired "less lethal" ammunition, according to the release.

The BCA recovered three firearms and portions of the incident were recorded on body, squad and drone cameras.

Residents said they heard a few gunshots about 2:40 p.m. followed by more gunshot-like noises at 3:30 p.m. Some students at Tartan High School and Oakdale Elementary School were on lockdown during the ordeal. Residents of the apartment complex were evacuated for hours and stood behind the building as officers negotiated with Codinack.

According to the complaint:

Officers responded to a person firing rounds from an apartment and found Codinack hanging out of his apartment window. Officers believed he was agitated.

Codinack made a statement about wanting to "meet God," according to the complaint. As officers tried to talk with him through the window, he threw out items, including a shotgun, onto the sidewalk near the entrance of the building below.

Officers asked Codinack to come out of his apartment peacefully, according to the complaint. During the negotiations, Codinack fired a hand gun at officers talking with him, the complaint continued. He fired toward Helms, Maklad and Merkling, according to the complaint. Those three officers and Boleen fired back.

Officers continued negotiations and Codinack later complied and was arrested.

He was taken to a hospital where medical staff placed him on a mental health hold.

The BCA found "numerous" firearms in Codinack's apartment and also seized five knives, a bow and six arrows, according to the complaint.

Alex Chhith • 612-673-4759

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