Cold Spring Officer Slaying Suspect Released from Jail

Updated: 12/04/2012 10:25 PM By: Scott Theisen

The man accused of shooting and killing 31-year-old Cold Spring Officer Tom Decker was released from jail Tuesday without being charged.

According to the Stearns County Sheriff's Office, Ryan Larson left the jail just before noon. Larson's family was waiting for him, but he left in a deputy's car. He was escorted to a hospital where he could ask for help if he wanted. Authorities say it's standard procedure for any inmate brought in and considered potentially suicidal.

Prosecutors had until noon Tuesday to charge Larson. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the Stearns County Sheriff's Office say prosecutors have determined they don't have enough documented evidence to charge Larson at this time.

“Our agencies have reviewed the investigative data collected thus far and must act within the time allotted by law, within the constraints of the law, and based upon the facts known at this time,” said Stearns County Attorney Janelle Kendall.

The St. Cloud Times conducted a 10 minute interview with Larson while he was in jail Sunday. In the phone interview Larson said, “Basically, they have no evidence whatsoever that points in my direction.”

Detectives are continuing to investigate the shooting of Decker, who was ambushed late Thursday after being called to check on Larson's welfare.

The night of Decker's death, Larson's family called police worrying he was suicidal.

In the interview with The St. Cloud Times, Larson said he had sent messages to his parents saying tomorrow (Friday) was a 'big day.' He said he was talking about a new direction he was taking in school- not that he was going to harm himself.

Authorities say Larson was in his bed at the time of his arrest.

“Investigators will not rest until we fully determine what happened the night of Officer Decker’s death and bring to account those responsible,” said Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Assistant Superintendent Drew Evans.

Anyone with information regarding the shooting or a 20 gauge shotgun believed to be the murder weapon is asked to call the Stearns County Sheriff's Office at 320-251-4240.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.