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Hero Down: Olmstead Co. Detention Deputy Mark Anderson Dies Of Heart Attack After Confrontation With Inmate

Rochester, MN – Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) Detention Deputy Mark Anderson died in the line of duty on April 15 after suffering a fatal heart attack following a confrontation with a belligerent inmate.

The incident between the lone 52-year-old detention deputy and the inmate occurred inside the Olmsted County Adult Detention Center as Detention Deputy Anderson was supervising the prisoners’ gym time, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.

One of the inmates became extremely upset, so Detention Deputy Anderson called for emergency backup.

The prisoner was ultimately escorted back to his cell unit by a group of detention deputies, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.

Detention Deputy Anderson later collapsed in the locker room of the jail.

His death was the result of a heart attack, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.

Detention Deputy Anderson graduated from Bemidji State University with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice in 1993, according to his obituary.

He began serving as a corrections officer with the Olmstead County Juvenile Detention Center in 1995, and later joined the OCSO in 2010.

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz ordered all U.S. and state flags be lowered to half-staff in honor of Detention Deputy Anderson, according to the Post Bulletin.

Walz described him as “a gentle giant of a man who was respected greatly by his colleagues and by detainees,” according to the paper.

“With its deepest gratitude, the State of Minnesota recognizes Detention Deputy Mark Anderson for his dedicated service to and sacrifice for his fellow Minnesotans,” the governor said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends, the Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office, and the community.”

Detention Deputy Anderson leaves behind his daughter, Samantha Jo, as well as his significant other, Deborah, and her son, Charlie, according to his obituary.

He is also survived by his brother, niece, aunts, uncles, and many friends.

Detention Deputy Anderson was laid to rest on April 22.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office Detention Deputy Mark Anderson, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.

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Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

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Avatar Written by Holly Matkin

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