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Man dies of self-inflicted wound at Black Bear Casino

Authorities enter Black Bear Casino Resort after a report of shots fired in the building Monday. (Steve Kuchera /
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A portion of the gaming floor at Black Bear Casino was shut down Monday after a man took his own life in one of the casino’s restaurants.

Carlton County Sheriff Kelly Lake said no one else was injured when the death occurred Monday afternoon at the Seven Fires Steakhouse. The victim died of a gunshot wound from a handgun, she said in a news release. Lake said the man was 52 and from Mahtomedi, Minnesota. No one else was injured and the public is not in danger, Lake said.

Terry Savage, executive director of Fond du Lac Tribal Enterprises, didn’t want to say specifically where the death occurred, but confirmed that it was in a public place.

An investigator prepares to enter Black Bear Casino Resort Monday. (Steve Kuchera /


A small portion of the gaming floor and adjacent areas were sealed from the public while police investigated, Savage said. A portion of the gaming floor remained closed the rest of Monday but would reopen Tuesday morning, he said.

“Our property is safe and secure,” Savage said.

At midafternoon Monday, several law enforcement vehicles were parked at the main entrance to the casino. A couple of officers and casino officials were blocking access to a gaming area just off that entrance. As police still were investigating the incident at the time, people wanting to enter the gaming floor were escorted to the area that was open.

The incident took place after a weekend in which a 27-year-old woman and her 18-month-old son were killed on the Fond du Lac Reservation. A man has been arrested in connection with the double homicide.

Savage said as far as he knows there’s no connection between the two events. Lake confirmed that there was no connection.

“Both incidents are tragic,” Savage said.

To get help

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: (800) 273-8255

  • Crisis Text Line: Text MN to 741741

  • South St. Louis, Lake, Cook & Carlton counties/Fond du Lac Band: (218) 623-1800 or (844) 772-4742

  • North St. Louis County/Bois Forte Band: (218) 288-2100

  • Itasca County: (218) 326-8565 or 211*

  • Koochiching County: (800) 442-8565 or 211*

*St. Louis County 211 services are not crisis-related

Related Topics: CRIME AND COURTS
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