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Documentary about Minn. officer who was shot in the head to premiere in 2024

Officer Arik Matson was shot in the head while on duty in 2020; he underwent months of treatment and had to relearn how to use the left side of his body

The Free Press, Mankato, Minn.

MANKATO, Minn. — Public screenings of a new documentary film chronicling the shooting and recovery of Waseca police officer Arik Matson have been scheduled for Jan. 5 in Owatonna — almost exactly three years since the shooting.

The film, “The Weight of the Crown,” was produced by Hometown Hero Outdoors, a Twin Cities -based nonprofit that facilitates therapeutic outdoor adventures for veterans and first responders.

The hourlong film tells the story of how Matson was shot in the head while on duty, his road to recovery and the Alaskan waterfowl hunting trip where he harvested a rare king eider duck.

Matson was shot in the head Jan. 6, 2020, by Tyler R. Janovsky, while on duty and responding to a call in Waseca. He was airlifted to North Memorial Hospital in Robbinsdale for brain surgery and ongoing treatment.

Four months and three Twin Cities hospitals later, Matson moved temporarily to a neurological rehabilitation facility in Omaha, Nebraska, where he worked to relearn how to use the left side of his body under COVID restrictions that kept him from seeing his family.

Seven months later, he returned home where his recovery continues. Janovsky was sentenced to 35 years in prison for the shooting.

The initial showing of the film on Jan. 5 will be private. But on Jan. 6 there will be two public showings.

Visit for more information on the film and showtimes.


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