Teen charged in Powerderhorn Park robberies, sexual assaults
MINNEAPOLIS-- A 16-year-old Minneapolis boy is charged with three counts of First Degree Aggravated Robbery, in connection with a pair of robberies and sexual attacks in Powderhorn Park last Wednesday.
In a petition to waive the suspect into adult court, prosecutors describe how the teenager and 3 juvenile suspects (two are 14, the other is 15) approached a 45-year-old woman and her two children as they were cross country skiing around 7:30 p.m. and pulled a gun.
Investigators say the teens demanded money and cell phones, and eventually ordered their victims to the ground. While searching them, two of the juveniles put their hands down the adult woman's pants and sexually assaulted her. When one of the assailants told the woman's 10-year-old daughter to pull down her pants the woman started to fight back. At that point the 4 suspects fled the scene.
When called to the scene Minneapolis Police officers followed the suspect footprints to a garage at 3248 Bloomington Avenue South. There, they heard what officers described as 'hysterical screaming', and two girls, ages 16 and 18, soon came running out of the garage yelling that two males had tried to rape them at gunpoint.
Officers soon collared two of the juveniles, who were identified by their teenage victims.
The 16-year-old suspect was found in the house at 3248 Bloomington Avenue South and arrested. It appears he had little or no involvement in the sexual assaults.
During interviews, investigators say 3 of the suspects admitted their involvement in the crime spree. The remaining suspect, the 15-year-old who reportedly threatened victims with a gun, denied involvement in any robbery or sexual assault.
Prosecutors have the option of petitioning to charge 16-year-olds as adults if the crime is serious, such as one involving a firearm. The other suspects will likely be handled in the juvenile system.
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