Man Accused of Killing Sheriff's Deputy Heading to Trial

By: Zac Schultz
By: Zac Schultz

Thomas Kramer will stand trial accused of the intentional homicide of Adams County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Shannon.

Kramer was in court for his preliminary hearing Friday.

The first witness for the prosecution testified he heard Deputy Shannon tell Kramer to put his gun down before he heard two quick shots, followed by a pause and then a third shot.

Ronald Amell, a highway department worker for the Town of Strongs Prairie witnessed the shooting March 7. He says Deputy Shannon was hit in one of the first two shots.

The criminal complaint says Shannon fired two shots and Kramer fired once.

Deputy Shannon was at Kramer's rural home because Kramer had allegedly threatened the highway workers trimming trees near his property with a gun.

According to Amell, Kramer had hidden a gun in the woods and went for it when Deputy Shannon arrived at the scene.

After Shannon was shot, Amell says he called out to ask if he was OK. The only response was Kramer's, "No, I shot him."

Kramer also faces charges of attempted first-degree intentional homicide for shooting at a tactical team later in the evening.

Juneau County Sheriff's Department Captain Steven Coronado testified that they were trying to get Kramer a phone later in the evening after Kramer barricaded himself in his trailer home.

Coronado says Kramer shot at him once before they were able to arrest him.

Kramer will enter his plea at the arraignment on June 4. However, the defense does not want a jury in Adams County to decide Kramer's fate.

They asked the judge to recuse the court from the case Friday, citing the close relationship between the court and the Adams County Sheriff's Department and the amount of publicity in the media.

The judge denied the motion, saying his court was impartial.

The defense will be able to ask for a change of venue after the arraignment.

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