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Minneapolis Criminal Law Blog

Woman enters guilty plea on charge of attempted murder

A Minnesota state trooper who stopped to assist a vehicle in distress on westbound Interstate 94 in Clay County ended up shooting a woman who threatened him with handgun. She survived with a gunshot wound to the arm and has entered guilty pleas for charges of 1st degree attempted murder and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

According to police reports, the 31-year-old woman had been traveling in a vehicle with a 29-year-old man. Their vehicle had skidded off the freeway near County Highway 336. The state trooper initially believed that he would only need to offer help until he noticed that the vehicle had been reported stolen in a neighboring state.

Man charged with murder in 27-year-old Minnesota cold case

A 56-year-old man admitted to investigators that he stabbed a 20-year-old woman to death in her south Minneapolis apartment on Dec. 19, 1991. A bloody washcloth recovered from the crime scene provided a DNA sample that allowed the Minneapolis Police Department and the FBI to identify a suspect, who had been a friend of the victim's boyfriend at the time.

The murder case had gone cold until 2008 when investigators sent the washcloth for newly available DNA testing. According to the criminal complaint filed by the Hennepin County attorney's office, the DNA analysis concluded that the blood likely included the suspect's DNA. The test ruled out 99.1 percent of the population.

Police officer who shot woman could face 2nd degree murder charge

The shooting death of a woman in Minnesota allegedly at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer has prompted prosecutors to amend their original charges against the accused shooter. The male police officer had been previously charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter, but a motion filed by prosecutors requested an upgrade of charges to second-degree murder based on the probability that he intended to kill her when he discharged his weapon.

The woman's death occurred on July 15, 2017 when she summoned police to her neighborhood with a 911 call. She suspected that a sexual assault was happening in the alley by her house. When two officers arrived in a police SUV, she approached the open driver's side window of the vehicle. The police officer sitting in the passenger seat, shot across his partner's body and struck the woman in the torso with a 9-millimeter bullet. She died on the scene. The officer driving the vehicle told investigators that the noise of the gun surprised him.

Can you lose your vehicle for a DWI?

Getting a DWI comes with many consequences, some immediate and some long-term. You may be worried about what the consequences will be. Most include paying fines, losing your license for a period of time, going to jail or completing a treatment program. In addition, you may face discipline at work or school, as well as higher insurance rates. 

Perhaps you have heard about other penalties, such as losing your car, known as vehicle forfeiture. Judicial forfeiture means a court order is necessary to take the vehicle. Administrative means the only requirement is a notice to the owner. Will either happen to you if you get a DWI in Minnesota?

Man who claimed self-defense charged with murder

A 29-year-old Minnesota man who admitted to police that he shot and killed an acquaintance has been charged with murder in the second degree without intent according to court documents released on Nov. 16. The man is also facing a felony firearms charge. The charges stem from an incident that took place on the afternoon of Nov. 13 in Audubon.

Police in Becker County say that they received a call at about 4:41 p.m. from a man who claimed to have shot a 29-year-old house guest who he had spent the afternoon drinking with in self-defense. The man is said to have told the officers who arrived at the scene that the pair had become embroiled in an argument after returning to the residence.

Two people facing murder charges for death of 24-year-old man

On Nov. 5, Minnesota authorities arrested two people in connection with the alleged homicide of a 24-year-old Willmar man. The decedent was found in a plowed field on Oct. 31.

According to the Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office, the defendants were arrested at around 5 p.m. for probable cause of second-degree murder and second-degree murder with liability for crimes of another. However, they have not yet been formally charged.

Minnesota man facing homicide charge opts for bench trial

A 20-year-old Minnesota man who is facing first-degree murder charges has decided to waive his right to a jury trial. The man made his decision during an Oct. 29 hearing according to media accounts. His trial is scheduled to begin on Nov. 6. The man faces the prospect of life in prison for his alleged role in the death of a University of Minnesota student who was shot to death in February 2017.

Police say that the man went to the 22-year-old student's Duluth home with two associates to demand drugs and money. Officers are said to have discovered narcotics and cash inside a safe in the home. When the student refused to comply, one of the man's associates is alleged to have shot him twice. Five people have been charged in connection with the homicide.

Woman charged with identity theft in Minnesota

According to a veteran computer crimes investigator, Minnesota residents who wish to avoid becoming the victims of identity theft should consider freezing their credit profiles. While blocking access to credit reports can create some inconveniences for consumers, it also makes life much more difficult for those who wish to use the information they contain to open accounts and make fraudulent purchases. Consumers who wish to learn more about freezing their credit can contact the various credit reporting agencies or the Federal Trade Commission.

The issue was raised in Minnesota recently when a prosecutor in Dakota County charged a Detroit woman for opening credit card accounts using other peoples' information and then purchasing goods worth about $18,000 at Menards home improvement stores. Police say that many identity theft cases involve individuals who use the identifying information they have obtained to purchase items that are then resold.

3 relatives of Minnesota woman accused of killing her neighbor

Two men and one woman related to an elderly Rochester woman have been jailed on charges related to the shooting death of a 38-year-old man who lived next door to her. The local police captain said that detectives suspect that the woman's relatives believed that the victim had caused the elderly woman's medical emergency. They apparently left St. Marys Hospital, where the woman received treatment, about one hour before they allegedly took part in the homicide.

One of the suspects, a 34-year-old woman, was recorded on a security camera in a convenience store where she bought plastic bags. Detectives claim that the 27-year-old male suspect used the bags to cover his feet and hands when he allegedly shot the man at his residence in Bob's Trailer Park located on Marion Road Southeast. A third man, age 20, supposedly drove the car that transported the accused shooter to the location.

Minnesota man charged for death of girlfriend

Authorities in Dakota County have filed a charge of second-degree murder against a man who had been the boyfriend of a 41-year-old woman from Burnsville. She had gone missing in November 2017 until a fisherman discovered her body this April near a bridge in Burnsville at Interstate 35W. The medical examiner in Hennepin County declared the woman's death a homicide. Her injuries indicated blunt force trauma to the right side of her face.

The man had been living with the woman when she disappeared. Police found blood stains on the apartment's bedroom floor that resembled the shape of a human body. During a police interrogation, the suspect said that the woman spilled two glasses of wine on the rug. Police also found blood in his vehicle's trunk, which he attributed to his girlfriend's bleeding when he brought her home from the hospital prior to her murder. Her medical records at the time did not indicate that she had bleeding wounds.

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