Fatal Police Chase: US Sen. Kevin Cramer’s Son Crashes, Resulting in the Death of North Dakota Sheriff’s Deputy

Fatal Police Chase: US Sen. Kevin Cramer's Son Crashes, Resulting in the Death of North Dakota Sheriff's Deputy

On Wednesday, Ian Cramer, the 42-year-old son of U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer, created chaos, crashing the family SUV through a hospital’s emergency room bay in Bismarck. Initially taken by his mother to the hospital due to mental health concerns, Ian seized control when she exited, driving through a door to escape the enclosed ambulance bay.

Over an hour later, in Hazen, about 70 miles away, a Mercer County deputy spotted Ian and the Chevrolet Tahoe. A police chase ensued, resulting in the SUV colliding with a parked Mercer County sheriff’s vehicle along a state highway. The crash claimed the life of a sheriff’s deputy deploying a tire deflation device during the pursuit.

During the police chase involving Ian Cramer, a tragic incident unfolded when a parked vehicle was rammed, leading to the death of Deputy Paul Martin, aged 53, who was preparing to deploy a tire deflation device. Ian Cramer underwent evaluation at a hospital and was subsequently placed in custody, with pending charges.

Expressing condolences, Senator Kevin Cramer urged public prayers for the fallen officer’s family and colleagues, acknowledging their dedicated service. Senator Cramer shared that his son Ian grapples with severe mental disorders, marked by paranoia and hallucinations. Earlier on the same day, Ian expressed a desire to “go to his brother Ike,” who passed away in 2018, though the statement does not provide further clarification.

Concerned about Ian Cramer’s mental health, Kris Cramer brought her son to the Sanford Health emergency room in Bismarck. However, Ian took control, ramming the ambulance bay doors and fleeing. Kris’s daughter tracked the SUV through a cellphone, aiding authorities.

A Mercer County deputy encountered Ian in Hazen, leading to a subsequent chase and crash on North Dakota Highway 200. The collision resulted in the tragic death of Deputy Paul Martin, an 18-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, leaving behind a wife and three children.

Mercer County Sheriff Terry Ternes expressed deep sorrow, describing Martin as a beloved figure in law enforcement, a family man whose loss has left hearts broken.

Governor Doug Burgum of North Dakota has ordered government agencies to lower flags to half-staff in honor of Deputy Paul Martin until sunset on the day of his interment, encouraging residents to do the same.

The Sanford Health hospital in Bismarck suffered damage to its emergency department’s main entrance, affecting the vehicle and ambulance garage. While the entrance is temporarily out of service, a replacement has been set up, and fortunately, no injuries were reported.

Whitney Zeadow, a 36-year-old resident near Hazen, shared fond memories of Martin, her former neighbor. She tearfully described him as a fantastic man, emphasizing his unwavering support for the community, his dedication to helping children, and his overall joyous presence.

Kevin Cramer, elected to the Senate in 2018 after three House terms, is a strong supporter of law enforcement. In a 2020 Fox News article amid George Floyd’s aftermath, he defended police, calling them imperfect heroes risking their lives daily.

In response to the recent tragedy involving his son Ian and Deputy Paul Martin, Cramer expressed grief and solidarity with Martin’s family, acknowledging Martin as a hero. The Cramer family has faced previous tragedies.

In 2007, Isaac “Ike” Cramer started dating a woman who had an infant, Abel. Tragically, three years later, the woman was killed by her estranged husband. Kevin and Kris Cramer adopted Abel, now a teenager.

Despite having two daughters and six grandchildren, the Cramer family faced sorrow in 2018 when Ike passed away at 35 due to liver and kidney failure after battling alcohol addiction. Kevin shared on Facebook that Ike was at peace, free from anxiety and the urge for alcohol.

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