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Dennis James Sullivan

Benedict man charged with attempted murder, assault

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BY Sarah smith

A surgeon from Benedict faces three felony charges in connection with the alleged choking of his 10-year-old foster son.

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Dennis James Sulllivan Jr., 50, is charged with attempted Second Degree Murder, First Degree Assault and Second Degree Assault, for allegedly stuffing a latex glove down the throat of the boy Tuesday.

He appeared in Hubbard County District Court Friday.

According to the criminal complaint, a Hubbard County deputy raced to the Sullivan home Tuesday night after an Anoka County Social Services worker contacted local authorities, saying Sullivan had attempted to shove a plastic glove down the boy’s throat. They called during a welfare check of the boy, the complaint stated.

“She could hear the boy gasping for air and having trouble breathing,” the complaint indicated.

The assault took place around 5 p.m. and was interrupted by Sullivan’s wife, who asked him what he was doing when she heard choking sounds from the child, the complaint said.

By the time she entered the room, Sullivan had jammed the glove into his pocket, the complaint stated.

Sullivan responded to his wife that he didn’t know what he was doing, but that he’d only covered the boy’s mouth for a minute, according to the complaint. He then called a mental health center in Grand Forks, expressing “homicidal thoughts,” according to the complaint, and headed north. When asked if he’d ever had these thoughts before, Sullivan allegedly admitted he had, more than once.

He left in his car and was en route to Grand Forks when the deputy got to his home in northeastern Hubbard County.

The Stadter Center, which treats patients for mental health issues and chemical dependency, notified authorities and Sullivan was apprehended by Grand Forks police on an outstanding warrant, Driving Under Suspension or with a revoked license.

He and his wife are licensed to have four foster children, but it is unclear how many others may be in the house.

Sullivan is licensed as a general surgeon and flies to various health care facilities. He formerly practiced in Odanah, Wis. It is unclear how long he’s been in Minnesota

His criminal record indicates he has been convicted of speeding in 2007 in St., Louis County, a Game & Fish Violation in 2007 and a Third Degree DWI in Cass County in 2009.

He was arrested for driving with a suspended license in Grand Forks Tuesday night, presumably from the DUI charge, since the suspension dated back to 2010.

His primary place of practice, according to his medical license, is Milbank, MN.

His medical degree came from the University of Minnesota.

Sources told the Enterprise he keeps a plane at the Nary Airport and flies to various surgical destinations.

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Sarah Smith
Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
(218) 732-3364
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