St. Paul man agrees to plea deal that reduces sentence

It is always important to have a criminal defense attorney when charged with as serious a crime as rape or kidnapping. These charges carry long and harsh punishments and having a lawyer can help mitigate a sentence to more appropriately fit a crime. For those suspects who don’t think they can afford an attorney or who choose not to speak with one could be unfairly convicted of and sentenced for a crime that is much more severe than what actually happened.

Luckily for a St. Paul man, he had worked with his lawyer to come up with a plea deal that best reflected the incident with which he was allegedly involved. The 49-year-old had originally been charged with rape and kidnapping, but he recently pled guilty to a sexual assault in exchange for having the more severe charges dropped. Now, he will spend three years in prison and register as a sex offender for 10 years. While it is unknown what he would have been sentenced to had he been convicted of rape or kidnapping, the third-degree assault conviction carries a much shorter sentence.

Prosecutors said that the woman who the man allegedly assaulted had been forced to perform oral sex on him and that he had choked her. When she was found by police, she had some marks around her neck, a shaved head and large bruises near her eyes. The man apparently had partially shaved the woman’s head and then she shaved the rest.

When police searched his home, they found human hair in a trash bag.

Source: Star Tribune, “Guilty plea in St. Paul case that left woman injured, head shaven,” Anthony Lonetree, May 14, 2012

He has won jury trial cases in misdemeanor and felony cases and in DWI’s and non-DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. He is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

What to Do If You Have Been Charged with a Criminal Offense

Involve a criminal appeal attorney soon after you learn the prosecution is appealing your sentence. Your attorney will walk you through the involving and confusing sentencing guidelines. An attorney's involvement will also help you develop a defense strategy for the appeal.