A Rushford man is charged with seven felonies in connection with an incident that left a car on fire and resulted in a police officer firing their weapon.
Ibraheem Farah Hamza Khalifa, 35, was arrested following the dramatic incident Saturday evening in Rushford, and on Tuesday was charged in Fillmore County with 11 different crimes, seven of which are felony-level counts.
Law enforcement had initially responded to a report of a restraining order violation, but according to the charges, Khalifa led police on a chase before stopping near a rural airport, before pulling out a rifle, setting his car on fire and twirling the weapon in his hands.
The Rushford police officer on the scene, identified Wednesday by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) as Darin Daveau, fired two shots at Khalifa, after he said Khalifa pointed the rifle at him. Khalifa was not struck, and the BCA said squad dashcam captured some of the incident.
An initial court appearance is scheduled for June 21, at 3:30 p.m. The 11 counts against him include:
- Firearms violation for a convicted felon
- Weapons possession after being convicted of a violent crime
- Second-degree assault
- Violation of a restraining order within 10 years of two or more priors
- Violation of a restraining order while in possession of a dangerous weapon
- Obstructing the legal process by interfering with a peace officer
- Fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle
- Possession of ammunition or a firearm with a previous felony conviction (gross misdemeanor)
- Restraining order violation (gross misdemeanor)
- Obstructing the legal process (gross misdemeanor)
- Careless driving (misdemeanor)
According to the charges:
Daveau, at 608 High Street North in Rushford, told Khalifa he was under arrest. Khalifa then drove off, and Khalifa followed, noting Khalifa was driving erratically through the city.
He took Highway 30 west, then turned on to Airport Road near Rushford Municipal Airport. There, he stopped the car in the middle of the road and exited his vehicle.
Daveau narrated what happened to dispatch. He said Khalifa took a gun from the vehicle and pointed it at his own head. Then, Khalifa pointed it toward Daveau, who responded by firing two shots, neither of which hit Khalifa.
Khalifa then poured gasoline on hit vehicle and lit it on fire.
A FIllmore County deputy, responding to the scene, parked nearby and watched through binoculars as Khalifa wandered around the burning vehicle while twirling a long gun of some sort, later identified as a .22 rifle. At one point, he briefly pointed it in the deputy's direction.
Another deputy, this one from the Houston County Sheriff's Office, arrived on scene. He'd had contact with Khalifa before, so called Khalifa's cellphone. They talked "for a while," after which Khalifa set the gun down on the road and was taken into custody.
The fire was then put out.
The BCA said a rifle was recovered at the scene.
Khalifa has prior convictions for domestic assault, terroristic threats and fourth-degree assault of a peace officer. He is on supervised probation, according to the charges, and is barred from possessing or using firearms or ammunition.
Daveau, an eight-year veteran of law enforcement, is on standard administrative leave while the BCA completes its investigation into use of force.