Canine helps police apprehend suspected felon near Walmart

by Jim Boyle


A 41-year-old Zimmerman man was arrested Thursday afternoon after a short search by several local law enforcement agencies.

Jeffrey Sample Sr. was arraigned on Monday, Sept. 12, in Sherburne County District Court for financial transaction card fraud, theft – take/drive motor vehicle — no owner consent charges and receiving stolen property.

According to Sheriff Joel Brott, investigators from the Criminal Investigative Division (CID) of the Sherburne County Sheriff’s Office along with investigators from neighboring counties were investigating a large number of complaints concerning thefts, stolen motor vehicles, burglaries and financial card transaction crimes that were occurring in Sherburne, Wright, Anoka, Isanti and Mille Lacs counties.

Investigators suspected Sample to be involved in many of those cases.  A number of the cases involved the  theft of credit cards from motor vehicles that were parked at Gold’s Gym located in Zimmerman.

After his arrest, investigators interviewed Sample, who admitted his involvement in over a dozen cases in Sherburne, Isanti and Anoka counties.

Further investigation continues into those and other cases which could lead to additional charges being filed against Sample.

A number of other cases are under consideration for charging by the Sherburne County Attorney’s Office as well.

Sample was reportedly observed running north from Walmart while officers were there on a related issue.

Witnesses stated the suspect was seen running into the wood line near the intersection of Zane Street and 181st Avenue, so Elk River officers set up a perimeter along with responding officers from the Sherburne County Sheriffs Office.

A K-9 unit from Anoka County was called in to conduct a search. The K-9 unit located the suspect hiding near some downed trees and after several commands to come out or show his hands, the suspect was bitten by the K-9. As a matter of policy, the suspect was transported to the hospital to have his wounds cleaned.  He was released from the hospital and transported to the Sherburne County jail.