KANDIYOHI TOWNSHIP, Minn. - Two people are now charged in connection with the murder of a man whose lifeless body was found in a Kandiyohi County farm field last week.
Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Officials say a farmer discovered 24-year-old David Medellin, Jr. laying in a field on the afternoon of Oct. 31. An autopsy revealed he had been stabbed to death, with the knife entering his lungs.
Caleb Aaron Blue, age 35, is charged with second degree murder while his girlfriend, 51-year-old Lori Gafkjen, is charged with multiple counts of aiding an offender. Prosecutors allege the two met while Blue was a prisoner at the Kandiyohi County Jail, and Gafkjen was a correctional officer at the jail. The two began a relationship in late June when he was released from jail.
Sheriff's investigators were dispatched on Wednesday, Oct. 31 shortly after 3 p.m. after a report from a farmer who had spotted a body in his field. A man later identified as Medellin was found covered with mud, and a large gash was apparent in his back just below the shoulder blades.
On Nov. 4 a Kandiyohi corrections officer received information about a person with a significant knife wound on his hand. That person was Caleb Blue, already a person of interest in the investigation, and the information reportedly came from Lori Gafkjen.
Surveillance led to detectives following Gafkjen's car to the Twin Cities and a motel in Ham Lake on Nov. 5. It was believed that Blue was staying there, and a BCA agent had the place under surveillance. Blue was captured trying to jump out a window, while Gafkjen was arrested in the motel parking lot.
When questioned Gafkjen told detectives that Blue had confessed to stabbing Medellin, giving no motive other than "it had to be done."
Blue allegedly told investigators that he and the victim had been at Jack Pot Junction Casino, drove back to Willmar and eventually ended up on a gravel road by a corn field. At that point Blue said Medelllin jumped out of the vehicle and ran, and that he ran after the victim and stabbed him. Once the victim was dead Blue says he called Gafkjen and told her to pick him up.
The sequence of events has left Medellin's mother reeling, wondering why her eldest son was murdered and left in a field.
"Got a call from the detectives, they showed up at our house that day and they told me they found a body," said Yesenia Alonzo, who last saw her son David as he was heading to a job interview at a local dairy Oct. 24. David was eager to get his life on track, she says, to move away from a difficult past and to provide for his 8-year-old daughter and unborn son.
His body was found seven days later in that corn field just outside of town.
"It's not right what they did to him. He was a kid, a 24-year-old kid," Alonzo insisted. "Me as a mom, it hurts me because I don't know anything. I don't know what happened to him. I don't know what they did to him."
Alonzo says her son has a troubled past but was getting his life together in order to prepare for a new son, and to help out five younger siblings who saw him as more of a father figure than an older brother.
Wednesday evening, community members gathered at the Robbins Island Park in Willmar for a candle light vigil. "He was my brother, my dad, he was everything to me," shared one of David's siblings. Several shops and restaurants in town are collecting donations to help the family with funeral expenses.