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K-9 Talon Nabs Two in Oliver Incident


Two persons were apprehended by deputies and K9 Talon early Monday morning in Oliver after deputies responded to a suspicious persons call at 5:52am.

An Oliver resident went out to his vehicle and found that it had been rummaged through.  About the same time a suspicious looking van and occupants drove by.  He gave chase and the van fled.  It stopped on the railroad tracks on Chicago Ave. where the occupants left the van and fled on foot, heading west on the tracks towards the Oliver Bridge.  The resident gave chase on foot, yelling for the people to stop.  The male suspect turned and threw a large bolt cutter at the resident, striking him in the leg.  He continued the chase, throwing rocks at the suspects.  The suspects left the railroad tracks and fled into a wooded area to the south along the river, and the resident called 911.

Several deputies responded and set up a perimeter and Deputy Brian Witt with K9 Talon began a track from the suspect vehicle.  Talon led deputies down the railroad tracks then off to the south.  He followed the suspect track and located two persons mostly submerged in the river just off the shoreline.

Taken into custody were Benjamin K. Nicholas, 32, Saginaw, MN and Amanda M. Valentine, 28, also of Saginaw.

They were in possession of additional burglarious tools, two leather jackets, a leather vest, a pair of leather Harley Davidson gloves, among other items.

The van they had been driving was found to have been stolen in Duluth earlier, along with a trailer that was recovered from an Oliver back road later in the day.

Interestingly enough, while this incident was in progress, the 911 center received a call from Benjamin Nicholas who stated someone was chasing him. They lost contact and got no answer when they tried to call him back.  His phone was found out of its case with the battery removed upon his arrest.

Charges are pending.

Benjamin Nicholas mugshot


Amanda Valentine mugshot