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Allen Kruk pleads not guilty to attempted homicide in La Crosse cop shooting
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Allen Kruk pleads not guilty to attempted homicide in La Crosse cop shooting

From the What you missed this week in notable La Crosse crimes and court cases series
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Allen C. Kruk

Kruk

Dustin Darling

Darling

A man accused of shooting a La Crosse police officer in August pleaded not guilty Monday to attempted homicide.

Allen C. Kruk, 34, La Crosse, will remain in custody after Judge Ramona Gonzalez declined to alter his cash bond.

Kruk has been in the La Crosse County Jail on a $50,000 bond since he was charged Sept. 6 with attempted first-degree intentional homicide using a dangerous weapon, theft of a gun, possession of methamphetamine and felony bail jumping.

He waived his right to a preliminary hearing Monday and Gonzalez found probable cause to bind him over for trial based on the criminal complaint.

According to the complaint, Kruk pulled a gun on La Crosse Police Officer Dustin Darling Aug. 3 during an incident on South Ninth Street near Cass Street. Darling responded to a disturbance at the residence of Kruk’s ex-wife, who was able to talk Kruk into going outside.

However, when Kruk saw Darling, he turned back. That was when Darling attempted to stop Kruk from going back inside with the children, and Kruk pulled a handgun and pointed it at the police officer, according to the complaint.

Darling’s body camera video shows Kruk pointing a gun at the officer, then Darling shooting Kruk while backing away.

Darling was then struck by a bullet in the chest, which was stopped by his bulletproof vest, according to the complaint.

Kruk is accused of stealing the handgun from a Monroe County residence.

Kruk’s court-appointed attorney Daniel Linehan asked the court for a signature bond with house arrest and GPS monitoring by Justice Support Services.

“The alternative is that he just sits through trial, because he has no money,” Linehan said.

Linehan was able to arrange a treatment plan for Kruk with Justice Support Services, he said, which would help ensure Kruk’s appearance in court.

La Crosse County District Attorney Tim Gruenke argued that the current bond is appropriate given the severity of the accusations and the potential danger to the public.

“In prior cases it indicated he was homeless. I would have concerns if he were released about where he would go and whether he would be able to maintain stability,” Gruenke said.

Gonzalez shared Gruenke’s concerns, saying she would reconsider her decision if Kruk had a stable place to stay, but the lack of a verifiable address was a significant factor.


Jourdan Vian can be reached at jvian@lacrossetribune.com or follow her on Twitter at @Jourdan_LCT.

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Jourdan Vian is a reporter and columnist covering crime and courts for the La Crosse Tribune. You can contact her at 608-791-8218 or jvian@lacrossetribune.com.

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