A Cedar-Riverside resident has been charged after 47 windows were shattered on the campus connector Washington Avenue Southeast pedestrian bridge during an act of vandalism in February.
Michael Walter Kimber, 37, has been charged in Hennepin County District Court with one felony count of first-degree property damage stemming from the Feb. 12 incident that began around 11 p.m., according to dispatch audio.
The bridge connects the east and west bank campus areas of the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis and serves as a major thoroughfare between the greater southeast Minneapolis area and Cedar-Riverside. The bridge conveys pedestrians on the top level and light rail trains and vehicles on the lower level.
Photo submitted from a follower: Numerous windows on @UMNews Washington Ave Bridge have been smashed out. Maintenance is in the process of repairs as we speak. @CrimeWatchMpls @UMNpublicsafety pic.twitter.com/bJ1TpWoDmr
— Watch Dog UMN (@WatchDogUMN) February 13, 2023
Charges say Kimber used a golf club to smash the windows. When University of Minnesota police arrived on site, dispatch audio indicated they were prepared to use less-lethal means to subdue the suspect, including a 40mm foam projectile launcher. Charges say Kimber was ordered to drop the golf club and get on the ground. Kimber complied and was placed under arrest.
The complaint states that 45 windows and two doors were damaged in the incident and estimates damages between $1,500-$2,000 per window to replace for a total of $70-$90,000 in repair costs.
No motive for Kimber’s actions is outlined in the criminal complaint.
Kimber, whose address is listed in court documents as the McKnight Tower Apartments in Cedar Riverside, was released from custody following his initial arrest and was charged about a week later by summons.
Court records indicate that Kimber made his first court appearance on the charge on March 9 at which time he was granted a public defender. Kimber is not in custody and appears to be free with no bail required. Kimber’s next court appearance is scheduled for April 27.
Kimber has 14 prior convictions including three DUI/DWI related convictions, and the remainder are mostly traffic related convictions including several for driving after suspension, revocation, or cancelation.
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Minnesota Crime Watch & Information publishes news, info and commentary about crime, public safety and livability issues in Minneapolis, the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota.