Twin Cities weekend crime recap

Former St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell's nephew was charged with murder after he allegedly beat a convicted sex offender to death and then "finished him off" with a moose antler. Overdoses have become so commonplace on transit and at stations that staff were told to assume someone is overdosing if they appear to be asleep.

Guns recovered from suspects by Brooklyn Center police (Brooklyn Center Police Dept.)

Fridley police responded Thursday to a report of a shooting just after 11 a.m. in the parking lot of Cub Foods at 250 57th Avenue Northeast. Responding officers found a male down in the parking lot. The Anoka County Sheriff’s Office later released a statement confirming the male had been pronounced deceased at the hospital.

The medical examiner has since identified the decedent as Devon Michael Adams, age 27, of Hugo, Minn. The ACSO released an update on Monday stating that there still had been no arrests, and they are continuing to investigate.

Court records show that Adams had been scheduled for jury trial on Monday, March 13 in Wright County District Court related to charges of domestic assault, second- and third-degree assault, and threats of violence. Adams was charged in the case in October after he allegedly threw boiling water in the face of his significant other and also threatened to kill her and commit suicide.

The ACSO offered no information on whether the pending case is related in any way to Adams’ death.


Champlin police responded to a report of an armed robbery on Thursday near Hwy. 169 and 120th Avenue North, according to dispatch audio. Champlin police provided an update over the weekend stating that the incident had been a carjacking at knife point, and there had been no injuries in the incident. They said the suspect was apprehended a few hours later by the Minnesota State Patrol outside of Albert Lea, Minn. Champlin police said, “the suspect is not local to our area, and he appeared to be passing through by looking for a vehicle to get himself to Colorado.”

Zachary Thomas Langer (Jan. 2023 booking/Anoka County Jail)

Jail and court records show Zachary Thomas Langer, 27, of Lexington, Minn., was arrested and charged on Friday with first-degree aggravated robbery. Charges say Langer approached a man as he exited Arby’s and demanded the victim’s keys, wallet and phone while holding a knife toward the victim. Police were able to track the Kia via GPS. Langer admitted upon arrest that he had committed the robbery and was planning to drive to Colorado.

Court records show Langer was just convicted in Anoka County District Court last Wednesday, the day prior to the robbery, on a gross misdemeanor charge of obstructing the legal process by interfering with a police officer. Langer’s one-year sentence was stayed by Judge Kathleen R. Gearin, and he was released with credit for 35 days spent in jail and was placed on unsupervised probation for a term of two years.

Langer has another recent conviction from October on felony first-degree damage to property, as well as a 2018 conviction on felony threats of violence. Langer received stays of imposition on both felony convictions and was placed on probation by judges Jenny Walker Jasper and Bethany A. Fountain Lindberg, respectively. Lindberg has since been appointed in Anoka County to Chief Deputy County Attorney.

Langer remains in custody in Hennepin County Jail on $100,000 bail.


Allen Denzel Oliver-Hall, 28, of Chicago, Ill., was sentenced in federal court Thursday to 70 months in prison for illegal possession of a firearm related to a June 2022 incident in St. Paul.

Allen Denzel Oliver-Hall (Sherburne County Jail)

Charges in the case said St. Paul police responded to a report of a domestic incident on the 1500 block of Timberlake Road around 3:20 p.m. that day. The officer encountered Oliver-Hall who attempted to get the officer to turn his back to him so that he could hide a gun, a stolen American Tactical 9mm pistol with an extended magazine. The officer saw the gun and tried to remove it from Oliver-Hall’s possession. During the struggle, the firearm was pointed toward the officer. Eventually, the officer was able to disarm Oliver-Hall.

Oliver-Hall has multiple prior felony convictions in Cook County, Ill., which makes him ineligible under federal law from possessing firearms or ammunition at any time, U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger said. Oliver-Hall’s prison sentence will be followed by two years of supervised release.


A Minnesota Corrections sergeant was injured Thursday at the Stillwater Correctional Facility in an unprovoked attack that marked the seventh corrections officer injured in just days last week, according to a statement by the Minnesota Dept. of Corrections. The cases will be submitted to the Washington County Attorney’s Office for review on possible charges.

On Friday, Dominique Antoine Jefferson, 36, was charged with first-degree assault related to a January attack on a female corrections sergeant at Oak Park Heights that left her partially blinded.

Dominique Antione Jefferson (MN Dept. of Corrections)

Patch reported that Jefferson has been incarcerated since 2005 following his conviction of aiding and abetting second-degree murder.

The January assault occurred after Jefferson requested to speak to a member of the crisis intervention team. A brief exchange of words took place between Jefferson and the sergeant, and he was ordered back to his cell. He refused, and the assault ensued wherein charges say Jefferson punched the sergeant with a closed fist. She was transported to the hospital with significant damage to her right eye and several facial fractures. Following several surgeries, she has been left with permanent vision loss.


Minneapolis police engaged in a pursuit of a shooting suspect Friday morning after the suspect vehicle rammed a squad in north Minneapolis, according to dispatch audio. The pursuit quickly crossed into Northeast Minneapolis over the Lowry Bridge during which an officer aired that the suspect was wanted in a homicide.

Six minutes after the pursuit started, the suspect vehicle crashed near 2nd and University avenues southeast while headed toward the University of Minnesota campus area. Video clips submitted to Crime Watch showed the immediate aftermath of the crash where one of the suspects was dragged out of the vehicle by police at gunpoint.

Officers aired during the incident that the driver was trapped in the vehicle and that police also found a gun in the car. The suspected “target” was also wearing an empty holster, they aired. At least three EMS rigs were requested to the scene. Four people were eventually transported to the hospital under police escort, according to dispatch audio.

Police later told media that the vehicle had been reported stolen and that the driver sustained potentially life-threatening injuries in the crash.

Jail and court records show that Norman Wesley Parker, 35, of north Minneapolis was the arrested shooting suspect.

Norman Wesley Parker (2019 Dakota County mugshot)

Parker was charged on Monday in Hennepin County District Court in two separate cases including two counts of attempted murder, drive-by shooting, and felon in possession of a firearm in one case involving a Jan. 4, 2023 shooting in north Minneapolis. Charges in the case say Parker pulled up to a vehicle containing two females, at least one of them known to him, and opened fire on the vehicle at West Broadway and Fremont avenues north. The passenger was injured with multiple gunshots to her lower body and was privately transported to Abbott Hospital. The driver of the vehicle later told police she knew Parker as “Shooter” and had interacted with him inside a residence earlier in the evening while the victim who was later shot had remained in the vehicle. Charges say the gun found in the vehicle following the pursuit on Friday was ballistically tested and was determined to be the gun used in the Jan. 4 shooting as casings from the test fire matched casings found at the drive-by shooting scene.

Parker is charged in a second case with being a felon in possession of a firearm or ammunition in connection to Friday’s pursuit incident. Charges reiterate that Parker had a live round of ammunition on his person as well as the empty gun holster.

Parker is prohibited from possessing firearms due to several prior felony convictions including being a felon in possession of a firearm, narcotics, domestic assault, and first-degree aggravated robbery.

Parker remained in custody on Monday on $1 million bail in the attempted murder case. He is scheduled to make his first court appearance in both new cases on Tuesday.


Two people were found deceased with apparent gunshot wounds Friday inside an Andover home on the 14900 block of Osage Street Northwest. The Anoka County Sheriff’s Office provided an update on Monday identifying the decedents as Jennifer Yang, 36, and Fue Her, 40, both of Andover. They said indications show that Mr. Her fatally shot Ms. Yang before taking his own life. The incident remains under investigation by the Midwest Medical Examiner’s Office and Anoka County Sheriff’s Office.


Gunfire erupted in Brooklyn Center on Friday evening at the Shingle Creek Crossing shopping area during the dinner hour. The shopping mall is located near Bass Lake Road and Xerxes Avenue North.

Initial reports indicated that about 30 rounds had been fired, but there had been no reports of injuries.

Brooklyn Center police provided an update Sunday stating that their investigation led them to believe that two groups of two people may have recognized each other at a fast-food restaurant at the location. One group left the restaurant without ordering and got into a vehicle. When the other group exited the restaurant, gunfire erupted in front of the business. The suspects and intended victims both left the scene, BCPD said.

Spent bullet casings are marked in Brooklyn Center (Brooklyn Center Police Dept.)

BCPD said a business and several vehicles were struck by gunfire in the incident but there were no reported injuries. Police recovered 21 spent bullet casings from the scene. BCPD continues to investigate the incident.


Inver Grove Heights police reported Friday that a Level 3 sex offender has moved into their area.

Herbert Carl Hubbard, 53, recently registered his address in the vicinity Audobon Avenue, which is the location of several clusters of apartment buildings near Schmidt Lake. Hubbard is described as a husky black male, 5-foot-9, and 255 lbs.

Herbert Carl Hubbard (MN Dept. of Corrections)

Hubbard has 1999 convictions on two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. Department of Corrections information says that Hubbard has a history of engaging in sexual contact with known female teenagers. Contact included sexual touching and penetration. Hubbard also exposed himself to one female, took advantage of one female’s vulnerable state, and used physical force with another to gain compliance.

Hubbard also has several other felony convictions including check forgery, failure to comply with predatory offender registration, first-degree damage to property, and robbery.

A community meeting is scheduled for March 15, 2023, at 6 p.m. at the Inver Grove Heights City Hall Council Chambers to discuss Mr. Hubbard’s transition into the community. Location: 8150 Barbara Avenue

Hubbard was last released from incarceration in Dec. 2020 and is expired from court supervision. He is not wanted by police at this time.


(Top photo) Brooklyn Center police reported that while responding to a trespassing report Saturday night at a hotel they seized three guns and arrested four people, one of whom was wearing an electronic monitoring ankle bracelet wrapped in ham and tinfoil.

Staff from the hotel, located on the 2500 Block of Freeway Boulevard, merely wanted four young men removed from the premise as they refused to leave for approximately two hours. As officers arrived on scene, the four young men were observed exiting the building and appeared to be evading police. The four initially did not comply with police demands to stop but eventually complied.

While officers tried to identify the four young men to trespass them, one of the young men lied about his name, thus prolonging the investigation, police said. The young men continued to show interest in a certain area near the building where they had originally exited and kept looking back and asking if they could go back there. One officer found it odd that they were highly interested in that specific direction, so he walked over to the area and discovered a freshly discarded handgun that had been modified to fire automatically.

All four were then taken into custody and arrested without incident; three were juveniles and one was an adult.

Police found an additional two guns next to the original gun, one of which was a pistol that had been illegally modified with a foregrip attachment, which police said is classified and regulated by the ATF as an AOW or “Any Other Weapon.” The third pistol was located when detaining one of the involved parties who had made his way back into the building where he had just been trespassed.

During the arrest process, police discovered that one juvenile was wearing an ankle bracelet (Electronic Home Monitoring ordered by a judge). The ankle bracelet was wrapped in tin foil with a slice of deli fresh ham under the tin foil, police said.

BCPD said they were proud to have recovered the “Ghost Guns” which consisted of P80 lower receivers with no serial numbers. All the guns had 30-plus round extended magazines and two of them had illegal modifications.

BCPD also said they were grateful the incident ended without violence and joked that the only loss was a slice of ham.


St. Paul marked its sixth homicide of the year on Saturday. Police responded on a report of an assault just after 7:15 p.m. and found a man who had an apparent stab wound to the chest sitting near his vehicle at Marshall Avenue and Arundel Street. Police said in a statement that the man later died at the hospital as a result of his injuries. Police said they located the crime scene on Sunday at a residence on the 700 block of Dayton Avenue and arrested 51-year-old Jacquelyn Olivia Vann in connection to the homicide. Formal charging information was not yet available at the time of this report.


The Blaine Police Department asked for the public’s help on Sunday in identifying a male related to an ongoing investigation. The nature of the investigation and the person’s relationship to it were not specified by Blaine PD. Anyone with any information is asked to contact Detective Mike Sommer at zfbzzre@oynvarza.tbi or 763-717-2741 and reference case number 23047983.

Blaine police seek information related to an investigation (Blaine Police Dept.)

Brooklyn Park police reported that they responded to a shots fired incident that took place Sunday about 10:15 p.m. on the 7500 block of North Meadowwood Court

On 03/12/23 around 10:15 P.M., officers responded to the 7500 block of N. Meadowwood Ct N for reports of several shots heard. Officers located evidence in street indicating several shots were fired. Officers conducted interviews with residents in the area and found no vehicles, residences, or persons were struck from the gunfire. The incident remains under investigation.


Over the weekend, Crime Watch obtained a copy of a bulletin reportedly sent out by Metro Transit administrators to all staff on Friday in which they warned, “Due to a recent rise in overdoses, staff should not assume individuals who appear to be asleep are not in need of immediate medical attention.”

In essence, they stated that overdoses have become so commonplace on transit and at stations that staff should just assume someone is overdosing if they appear to be asleep.

Crime Watch has repeatedly documented reports of overdoses, as well as crimes, on transit and at stations, including four in Minneapolis in a 90-minute period Wednesday to Thursday last week.

The bulletin to Metro Transit staff gives tips on how to identify if someone may be overdosing and recommends that staff immediately contact the Transit Control Center if they have concerns about an individual.

The bulletin also attempts to minimize the concern staff may have about coming into contact with “odors” produced by narcotics or chemicals being used on transit or at stations by claiming that odors have “very low concentrations of narcotics/chemicals.” They tell operators in the bulletin to open a window if they believe smoke or odors are causing them or others to have health issues.

Around Minnesota

Levi Axtell, 27, of Cook County, Minn., was charged with second-degree murder Friday after allegedly beating to death previously convicted sex offender Lawrence Scully, 77, in Grand Marais on March 8.

Levi Axtell (Cook County, MN Sheriff’s Office)

Charges say Axtell told police he used a shovel and hit Scully 15-20 times before he “finished him off” with a moose antler. Axtell was covered in blood when he turned himself in at the sheriff’s office.

Reports say Axtell had obtained a restraining order in 2018 against Scully on behalf of his then 22-month-old daughter who he believed Scully was stalking along with other children near their daycare.

Axtell is the nephew of former St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell.


Wright County and Big Lake law enforcement collaborated on Sunday to apprehend a wanted suspect who engaged Wright County law enforcement in a pursuit, Big Lake PD reported. The apprehension played out in the area of Highway 25 and Harrison Drive where the suspect vehicle had crashed, and a brief perimeter search ensued. Information about the arrested party was not immediately available.

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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.

 

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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.