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Assault rifle recovered, law enforcement still seek 2 suspects in manhunt northeast of Bemidji

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An early morning report of gunfire today has area law enforcement looking for a 23-year-old Bemidji man.

The Beltrami County Sheriff's Office is looking for Robert Wayne Parker Jr. and a second person who has yet to be identified by investigators.

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According to a news release from the Sheriff's Office:

At 11:58 p.m. Monday, the Sheriff's Office received a report of gunfire in the down-town area of Turtle River. When responding deputies arrived at the residence no one would answer the door

A short while later, a car sped away from the location and deputies followed the vehicle away from the residence and attempted to make a stop. The vehicle pulled to the side of the road and when deputies got out of their vehicles and began giving commands to the occupants, the vehicle took off at a high rate of speed. Deputies pursued the vehicle from Turtle River, across to Irvine Avenue and north.

The fleeing vehicle hit stop sticks which had been deployed by a state trooper on Irvine Avenue.

The suspects continued northbound on two tires and eventually stopped their vehicle south of Buena Vista Ski area and fled into the woods in a westerly direction.

Deputies reported one of the two suspects who fled on foot appeared to be armed with a pistol. A third suspect was apprehended in the vehicle and arrested. An AK-47 style assault rifle was found by deputies in the car along with two 30-round magazines.

The news release said more deputies, the Headwaters SWAT team, Border Patrol 0fficers and Paul Bunyan Task Force members responded to the scene, sweeping the area in an attempt to locate the suspects.

The search was aided by a Minnesota State Patrol Helicopter using thermal imaging equipment. Officers searched several residences and out-buildings in the area and spoke with several homeowners during the manhunt.

According to dispatch logs, authorities arrested 20-year-old Jessica Ann Johnson in connection with the investigation.

Anyone with information about these suspects is asked to call the Sheriff's Office at (218) 333-9111.

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