ELLENDALE — An Ellendale man faces three counts of felonious assault after he allegedly sliced the neck of a man he had been fighting with all night.

Derek Jon Kruckeberg, 26, was charged with three counts of assault in varying degrees — first-degree assault, second-degree assault and third-degree assault — in Steele County Court on Monday. The first-degree assault charge carries the most serious penalty with the possibility of up to 20 years in prison and a $30,000 fine.

According to the criminal complaint, a deputy with the Steele County Sheriff’s Office responded to a home on 72nd Avenue in Ellendale after 2 a.m. June 30.

There, the deputy found a man with “blood running down his stomach, neck and back area.” There was also a woman keeping pressure to the left side of the man’s neck, according to the report.

The victim, a male relative of Kruckeberg, said Kruckeberg had sliced him with a knife. According to the complaint, Kruckeberg had been arguing with the alleged victim throughout the night.

According to the report, the man said that Kruckeberg said, “I’m going to cut you” when the two were near a shed at the back of the house. The wound was described to be about two inches long. The complaint also said that a deputy was not allowed to photograph the wound because, according to a doctor, the manner in which the photograph would be taken could have jeopardized the man’s life due to arterial bleeding.

The report stated there was “a large amount of dried blood all over (the man’s) body to include both of his arms, hands, chest, face and neck.” The man was initially treated at Owatonna Hospital before being airlifted to Rochester for further treatment.

The deputies went to Kruckeberg’s residence, but he was not there. He was later located in Clarks Grove by Freeborn County deputies and was transported to the Steele County Detention Center.

Kruckeberg’s outright bail was set at $50,000. His conditional bail was set at $10,000 with the understanding that he attend his scheduled court appearances, refrain from the use of alcohol or other controlled substances, stays out of bars and taverns and has no contact with the alleged victim.

Kruckeberg made bail and was released from the detention center. He is next scheduled to appear in court on Aug. 1.

Al Strain can be reached at 444-2376.

Al Strain can be reached at 444-2376.

I am a reporter for the Owatonna People's Press covering cops, courts, the city beat, business, agriculture and features. I graduated from Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa in May of 2012. While in college I majored in Communication Arts with an emphasis