Judge says murder charge stands in Eveleth slaying
An Iron Range judge ruled Wednesday that prosecutors presented sufficient evidence to support the first-degree murder indictment returned in the case of a 20-year-old woman who was stabbed to death at the Eveleth business where she worked.
Sixth Judicial District Judge Gary Pagliaccetti denied a defense motion to dismiss the indictment against Jesaiah Lee Carlson, 31, of Two Harbors. Carlson is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and two counts of attempted first-degree criminal sexual conduct in the 2007 death of Megan Ashley Anderson of Cook.
Public defender K. Scott Belfry said he will appeal Pagliaccetti's decision to the Minnesota Court of Appeals. Assistant St. Louis County Attorney Gordon Coldagelli presented the case to the grand jury and will prosecute it.
Belfry said one of his strongest appealable issues is that grand jurors weren't told of past evidence contamination by a Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension forensic scientist who testified before them.
A knife was found in Carlson's car that contained DNA that would exclude
97.8 percent of the world's population but would not exclude Anderson. In his motion to dismiss, Belfry argued that the scientist who conducted the DNA analysis has a history of contaminating evidence and provided misleading information to grand jurors.
Another issue Belfry will raise in his appeal is the fact that grand jurors were improperly told, he believes, of a charge brought against Carlson's wife for allegedly being involved in the destruction of computer evidence at her husband's request. Lindsey Ann Carlson, 27, is charged with aiding an offender and conspiracy to aid an offender. She is free on conditional release.
Anderson was stabbed more than 20 times Aug. 29, 2007, while she worked alone at Durkee Signs & Graphics in Eveleth. An FBI agent in the bureau's Behavioral Analysis Unit has theorized that Anderson was killed for sexual gratification.
Carlson was a salesman for Allstar Advertising of Duluth. He and a business associate were together selling cutting boards and children's books in the Eveleth area at the time of the slaying. According to the criminal complaint, he told investigators he couldn't remember what happened during the time frame that Anderson was killed.
Carlson is scheduled to stand trial on June 2 in the St. Louis County Courthouse in Virginia. He's being held in the St. Louis County Jail on $1 million bail.