One man is dead in an apparent random shooting in St. Cloud Sunday morning, and another man with a history of convictions for violent crimes is in custody.
A man was randomly shot while standing in a doorway of a residence just after 6:15 a.m. on the 2600 block of Island View Drive in St. Cloud, Minnesota, according to a statement released by the St. Cloud Police Department.
The victim was taken to an area hospital where he later died. His identity and cause of death will be released later by the medical examiner.
Police set up a perimeter and attempted a K9 track to locate the suspect, but they were not successful.
About 45 minutes later, at 7:04 a.m., police dispatch received a call about a male armed with a gun walking in the area of the 1200 block of 4th Avenue South. Police arrived and took the male into custody without incident, and a handgun was recovered at the time of the arrest. The male was subsequently identified as Jason Robert Beckman, 45, of Duluth.
Beckman admitted to police that he had shot the man in the doorway. Police at this point believe the incident to be random and say there appears to be no connection between Beckman and the victim or the neighborhood.
Beckman is in custody in Stearns County Jail on probable cause murder.
Beckman has a recent history of convictions for violent crimes for which he received reduced or stayed sentences.
Beckman had a felony conviction for third-degree assault in 2018 in Redwood County. His 18-month sentence on that conviction was stayed by Judge Patrick Rohland.
Most recently, Beckman was convicted in Redwood County in October 2020 on felony counts of third-degree assault and fifth-degree narcotics, and a gross misdemeanor charge of domestic assault.
According to court records, the 15- and 13-month sentences on the third-degree assault and narcotics convictions were stayed, and Beckman was instead sentenced to 115 days in local jail on each charge. The 365-day sentence on the domestic assault conviction was reduced to 90 days in local jail. Beckman was credited with 77 days already spent in jail and was placed on probation, again by Judge Rohland.
Beckman was back in court on March 1 of this year and was found to have violated the terms of his probation. Instead of having his probation revoked and his sentences executed, Beckman was again ordered to serve only 90 days in local jail on the probation violation. Under Minnesota law, offenders are only required to serve two-thirds of their sentence incarcerated, or 60 days in this case, leaving Beckman free by May.
Police are continuing to investigate the fatal shooting and ask anyone with information to contact the St. Cloud Police Department at 320-251-1200 or Tri-County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-255-1301.
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