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Multiple charges filed against alleged Oakdale shooter

The suspect in the Oakdale shooting of 9-year-old Devin Aryal was charged today in Washington County District Court.

Nhan Lap Tran, 34, of Oakdale was charged with second degree intentional murder, second degree felony murder during an assault, assault in the first degree and two counts of assault in the second degree with a dangerous weapon.

County Attorney Pete Orput announced the filing of the charges today for the Feb. 11 shooting incident near the Oakdale Rainbow store that also left Aryal's mother and another woman wounded.

Tran made his first appearance in court before District Judge Ellen Maas who set bail at $2 million. 

A public defender was appointed and requested a competency and mental health examination, which was ordered.

According to the criminal complaint:

Tran stood in the middle of 7th Street near Hadley in Oakdale, less than three miles from the Woodbury border, and opened fire with a 9mm handgun on passing motorists.

During the episode, Aryal was fatally wounded, and his mother, the driver was also wounded. Another driver was also hurt and hospitalized at Regions Hospital, where her finger was ultimately amputated as a result of gunshot wounds.  

Two other drivers were shot at in their vehicles but not struck by the gunfire. The complaint indicates that Tran, after Oakdale Police and Washington County Sheriff's deputies had set up a perimeter, ultimately surrendered to a deputy peaceably. He was found to be carrying the handgun, several spare loaded magazines and numerous extra live rounds for the weapon. 

Tran admitted, upon questioning, that he was the person that had opened fire on the vehicles, according to the complaint.

"This case is simply a senseless tragedy," Orput said. "We cannot comprehend a situation where a parent loses their child in any manner, much less in this way.

"Our hearts go out to Devin's family and to the families of all the victims in this case. My office will do all it can to bring justice to all of them, at the same time knowing that it is not enough. However, they deserve no less."