AUSTIN EDITION Investigation continues into party standoff

From staff and news service reports

WINONA -- Authorities are investigating a four-hour standoff between police and partygoers that started as a routine complaint about a noisy party.

Police issued 21 under-age drinking tickets after the standoff on Oct. 28 and arrested a tenant on unrelated warrants. As of Friday, the Winona Police Department was still investigating.

The impasse started when a neighbor called police to complain about the noise. When police arrived, about 100 people locked themselves in the house and refused to answer the door, said Deputy Police Chief Tom Williams.

Williams said one of the tenants, Kenneth Nathaniel King, told them he would return with his roommate and his identification, but he never returned and no one answered when police knocked. As many as seven officers surrounded the home.


Officers waited for about half an hour and then called the owners of the house, Timothy White and Jennifer Weis of Kasson. They arrived at the house about 2:30 a.m., wanting to know why police were "holding students hostage," police said.

Soon after the owners arrived, King came out of the house and police arrested him on two outstanding St. Louis County warrants for failing to appear on charges of driving after suspension, no proof of insurance, speeding and driving with one headlight.

Officers got a search warrant and returned about 4:30 a.m. They cited King and Alexander Ian White, the homeowners' son, for having more than one beer keg in the house and kegs without identification tags.

One partygoer, Ashley Heydt, said the tenants instructed people to stay in the house when police arrived. She said every room -- and closet -- had people in it and that people found places to fall asleep as the standoff dragged on.

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