A reported gang member previously convicted of aiding and abetting manslaughter has been arrested in connection to the north Minneapolis New Year’s Eve murder of a real estate agent.
Minneapolis Police announced the arrest on Friday of Cedric Lamont Berry, 41, in connection to the death of Monique Baugh and he’s been booked into Hennepin County Jail on probable cause murder.
Baugh, 28, who was killed on New Year’s Eve, was found in the alley of the 1300 block of Russell Avenue North in Minneapolis after police responded to a Shotspotter activation. Baugh was found with duct tape on one wrist and suffering multiple gunshot wounds. She was pronounced dead a short time later.
According to a report, a search warrant affidavit revealed that Baugh had been scheduled to show a house in Maple Grove before she was killed. Nearby security video showed Baugh’s vehicle pull up to the house and a U-Haul truck pass by a short time later. A person then walked into the house and the U-Haul backed up to the garage doors. Investigators believe the video shows Baugh being escorted into the back of the U-Haul before it drove away.
About an hour before Baugh was found shot in the alley, police were dispatched to a home on the 4800 block of Humboldt Avenue North on a report of a shooting. The man shot in that incident was Baugh’s boyfriend. He has not been named in any reports yet and is expected to survive. The search warrant affidavit indicated that Berry is a “rival” drug dealer to Baugh’s boyfriend.
Berry has 18 prior convictions in Minnesota including five felonies. Berry was convicted in 2002 on a charge of aiding and abetting manslaughter. Another charge of aiding and abetting second-degree murder was dismissed in the case and Berry was sentenced to 60 months in prison.
Berry’s other four felony convictions are for narcotics, including a 2010 case where Berry was accused of gang-related cocaine racketeering. Berry was originally charged with 10 felony counts in that case but ended up pleading guilty to only two of the charges and was sentenced to just over two-and-a-half years in prison. Berry’s most recent two felony convictions in two separate narcotics cases in Hennepin County were ordered to be served concurrently – at the same time.
Court records show that Berry was charged in March on two felony counts of narcotics and fleeing police. He failed to show up at a scheduled April hearing and a warrant was issued for his arrest. Hennepin County jail records show that Berry was arrested and booked into jail on Oct. 22 on the warrant as well as probable cause charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm and possession of narcotics.
Despite Berry’s criminal history and his April failure to appear in court, Berry was released from custody that same day following an initial court appearance with no bail required by Judge James Moore. The record shows that he was also released with no formal charge on the weapons count.
A subsequent jail booking from Nov. 20 indicates that Berry was again booked on probable cause narcotics, but was again released without formal charges and no bail required.
Berry, whose address on booking is listed on the 3900 block of Girard Avenue North, remains in custody at Hennepin County Jail without bail and awaiting formal charges. There has been no word from authorities on whether Berry is implicated in the shooting of Baugh’s boyfriend.
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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.