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Cottage Grove man sentenced for break-in, gun incident

A Cottage Grove man who broke into his parents' home and staged loaded guns and knives throughout the home to thwart an "alien invasion" will spend 10 years on probation.

Alexander C. Seaton, 20, was sentenced last month after pleading guilty in Washington County District Court to first-degree burglary with a deadly weapon. Two other charges were dismissed in a plea deal that stemmed from an incident nearly two years ago.

The criminal complaint describes the incident: Seaton, who was 18 at the time, broke into his parents' 85th Street Place home while they were out of town. He had been kicked out of the home three months prior.

Seaton sent a text message to his parents with a picture of himself holding two rifles. There were weapons in the home and not all had been locked away. Seaton's brother contacted him and the suspect admitted that he broke in through a basement window. He sounded "extremely paranoid and was talking about government conspiracies and people following him," according to the complaint.

Police and the Washington County Special Response Team went to the home and tried to contact Seaton by phone. Neighbors reported hearing gunshots from the residence.

Later, Seaton walked out of the home holding a cellphone and appeared startled by the police presence. He was safely apprehended.

Inside the home police found numerous loaded guns and unsheathed knives placed by doors and windows. A safe was damaged and discharged shotgun shells were found outside the front and back doors.

In an interview with an investigator, an irritated Seaton said he had stayed in his parents' garage for two days before "the voices (in his head) told him to break into the house," the complaint says. He admitted to shooting five rounds outside the home and said he was told by voices to break into the home and load weapons to "stave off an alien invasion."

The court issued a stay of imposition on his sentence for the felony crime and placed him on 10 years probation with numerous conditions, including that he pay a fine, remain law-abiding, not use drugs or alcohol, complete an offender recovery program and finish all mental health programming.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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