A motorist slammed an SUV into the front gate at the governor's residence in St. Paul Sunday night, and state troopers ordered the man out of the vehicle at gunpoint before arresting him, according to the State Patrol.
Clinton L. Fouquette, 59, of St. Paul, was charged with criminal damage to property and terroristic threats.
He remained jailed Monday ahead of his first court appearance on Tuesday.
The driver "did not enter the grounds" after the SUV came to a stop on the drive inside the gate, State Patrol spokesman Lt. Gordon Shank said. No one was injured, he added.
Gov. Mark Dayton was home at the time, said spokeswoman Caroline Burns, but "was never in danger. The State Patrol quickly contained the situation and apprehended the suspect."
Emergency dispatch audio immediately after the incident revealed that one of two state troopers on the scene along Summit Avenue "was going to check on the governor."
Bruce Gordon, spokesman for the state Department of Public Safety, said, "The State Patrol ordered the suspect out of the vehicle at gunpoint, de-escalated the situation and arrested him without incident."
The State Patrol is the primary provider of security for the governor, his staff and his residence.
While the patrol had yet to say whether the damage done to the gate by the 1999 Chevy Tahoe was intentional, the nature and severity of the felony charges pointed to Foquette committing a willful act.
According to the charges:
Troopers at the residence heard a crash, "which sounded like an explosion," and one trooper kept watch on the SUV "to make sure it wasn't an explosive" as other members of law enforcement arrived.
After Fouquette was removed from the vehicle, he told troopers "he had many problems and … believed the only solution was to speak with the governor."
He went on to tell paramedics that he had medical problems and was weary of "all the electricity" under his skin, the criminal complaint quoted him as saying.
Authorities estimated that the crash caused $50,000 to $75,000 damage to the gate.
Officials said Foquette was from Center City, Minn., but the vehicle's registration, charging document and other public records show he was living on St. Paul Avenue in St. Paul, about 4 miles southwest of the governor's residence.
The governor's schedule for Monday, released early Sunday night, said he had meetings planned with agency chiefs and staff throughout the day.
A similar incident occurred in September 2016, when a St. Paul man rammed his car into the front gate. The driver, 42-year-old Wondu Seifu, told troopers at the scene that he wanted to speak with the governor.
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482