Woman charged with hitting man with hatchet

By Janice Gregorson

DOVER — A Dover woman allegedly hit a man in the head with the blunt end of a hatchet and tried to strangle him last week in a dispute over cows.

Brenda Kay Shorter, 35, has been charged with two felony counts of second-degree assault with dangerous weapons. Unconditional bail was set at $40,000 and conditional bail at $20,000. She returns to Olmsted District Court May 12.

Sheriff’s deputies were called Friday afternoon to the Eyota Kwik Trip, where a woman told officers about an attack on a friend the previous day at a farm in Dover Township.


The complaint says deputies went to the farm and talked to the 44-year-old victim, who said he was milking cows when he was hit in the back of the head. He thought a cow kicked him, he said. He was allegedly hit at least three more times by Shorter, who is his sister-in-law, with the blunt end of a hatchet, then tried to strangle him with a lariat. He said he took the hatchet from her and punched her in the face to stop her from assaulting him. He said she fell to the ground and was knocked out for about 30 seconds.

According to the complaint, the victim said Shorter was upset with how he treated the cows.

She told deputies that she walked up behind the man and hit him in the head with the hatchet and he fell to the ground. She said they had not been talking or arguing, the complaint says.

She told deputies she didn’t remember anything else but said she "just lost control and couldn’t take it any more," according to the complaint.

She was treated at Saint Marys Hospital for a concussion and two fractures of her left cheek. The man had two deep cuts and two abrasions on his head, the complaint says. He was treated at Olmsted Medical Center.

Authorities said they found a bloody hatchet and the man’s bloody hat in the storage room of the milk house. The lariat was found outside.

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