Seal of Dane County County of Dane
Dane County Sheriff's Office

Town of Albion Barricaded Suspect

April 11, 2024
Elise Schaffer, PIO, (608) 284-6142
Sheriff's Office

What began as a check person call on Charles Lane in the town of Dunn ended with a barricaded suspect taking his own life inside a home on Ramsey Road in the town of Albion. Tragically, a 13-year-old female was also found deceased during the incident.

The initial call came to dispatchers at 5:21 pm. A description of a black Ford Escape was aired to law enforcement as suspicious after a man left a 5-month-old infant at the Charles Lane residence. McFarland Police were the first agency to locate the Ford Escape, and they attempted to stop the vehicle. The driver, later identified as Alexander C. Grunke, age 38, of Middleton, refused to stop, and a pursuit was initiated. The pursuit traveled through McFarland, Stoughton, and townships in southeastern Dane County, where law enforcement successfully used tire deflation devices (road spikes) to disable the vehicle. During the pursuit, several rounds were fired from the Ford Escape toward the pursuing officers. Grunke and his female passenger, both carrying firearms, ran from the vehicle once it was inoperable. A short time later, the girl was found deceased in a wooded area off Washington Road. Life-saving efforts were made by law enforcement and EMS, but she was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Grunke continued to run, forcing his way into the lower level of a home on Ramsey Road where a woman and her two children were inside. A team of law enforcement entered the house and were able to get the woman and her children out safely, but Grunke remained on the lower level of the house with his firearms. Special Teams from the Dane County Sheriff’s Office were on the scene, and a perimeter was established around the home. A Reverse 911 message was sent to citizens in the area to stay inside and lock their doors. Grunke was heard firing shots from inside the house, and he was not responding to attempts by negotiators to make contact. Resources, including drones, a robot, K9s, and chemical munitions, were used in attempts to engage Grunke, but after several hours, he was found deceased by an apparent suicide. The Dane County Medical Examiner’s Office was on the scene and will conduct its investigation to determine the cause and manner of death. The identity of the minor female will not be released publicly.

“Our deepest condolences go out to the families and friends who are grieving the loss of a loved one after last night’s events," stated Sheriff Kalvin Barrett. “I want to commend our deputies, detectives, and special teams for their resiliency to this dangerous and rapidly evolving apprehension of two armed individuals. There was communication and collaboration with numerous other state, county, and local law enforcement agencies in Dane and Rock County. We are grateful for their support and partnership.”

As this scenario unfolded, it was learned that Grunke may have committed a homicide in Dubuque, Iowa. The Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office is conducting that investigation. At this time, everyone's relationships are still being pieced together. According to the Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office, the 13-year-old female with Grunke and the infant are the children of their homicide victim. The infant is in the care of Dane County Human Services and was not injured. Dane County’s Victim Services also responded to the scene to assist two displaced families during the incident.

We cannot express enough appreciation for the law enforcement agencies, Fire and EMS, 911 communicators, and social service organizations who responded to assist during this continually evolving and dangerous scenario.


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