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GRAND MARAIS — Marcus Lee Roberts was a hard-working father of five who cared deeply for his family and spent every spare dollar helping others, those closest to him told a judge Wednesday. Nearly two years after the 35-year-old Twin Cities native was fatally shot while working at a holiday party at a popular North Shore resort, his family was left with far more questions than answers.
GRAND MARAIS — A North Shore resort worker who admitted to fatally shooting another man outside a holiday party in December 2015 was sentenced Wednesday to 12½ years in prison. Kirk Lee Bigby, 63, received the sentence from 6th Judicial District Judge Eric Hylden after an emotional, nearly two-hour hearing in State District Court in Grand Marais.
About four years ago, Karl Tarnowski built a new house for his parents adjacent to his own home along Norton Road in upper Kenwood. His dad, Ron, is 82 years old and has early stage dementia. His mom, Mary, 78, suffers from right-side paralysis and has difficulty speaking. At the new home, Karl and his wife, Bev, could check in every morning, noon and night to visit his parents and tend to their medical needs.
A Finland man dropped his self-defense claim and pleaded guilty to a murder charge Friday in a fatal shooting outside a popular North Shore resort in 2015. Kirk Lee Bigby, 62, admitted to unintentional second-degree murder in the slaying of 35-year-old Marcus Lee Roberts during a holiday party at Bluefin Bay in Tofte. With the plea, he averts a two-week trial that had been set to begin June 5 in State District Court in Grand Marais.
The trial for a Hibbing truck driver accused of criminal vehicular homicide in a crash that killed the Silver Bay mayor’s son has been postponed until October. John Ray Carpenter, 60, was set to stand trial next month in the 2015 death of Andrew Johnson, who was killed when his pickup truck was struck head-on by Carpenter’s septic tanker in October 2015.
A Finland man faces five charges after allegedly confronting a neighbor with two firearms, discharging several rounds in the process, and subsequently threatening to shoot law enforcement officers during a 13-hour manhunt on Sunday.
A Nashwauk man allegedly had THC in his system and was in possession of marijuana when he caused a wrong-way, head-on collision that injured a woman along Minnesota Highway 61 between Duluth and Two Harbors last spring. Shawn Patrick Bennett-Casanova, 31, is charged with criminal vehicular operation in the March 2016 crash that left an 18-year-old Silver Bay woman hospitalized.
The trial for the suspect in a fatal North Shore shooting has been rescheduled for June. Kirk Lee Bigby, 62, of Finland, faces intentional and unintentional second-degree murder charges in the December 2015 killing of Marcus Lee Roberts outside the Bluefin Bay resort in Tofte. Bigby had been set for trial for next week, but a judge last month agreed to postpone the case to allow the defendant to discharge his public defender and hire private counsel.
The defendant in a fatal shooting on the North Shore is seeking to postpone his January trial date and hire a new attorney. Kirk Lee Bigby, 62, of Finland, is charged with two counts of second-degree murder in the December 2015 death of 35-year-old Marcus Lee Roberts outside the Bluefin Bay resort in Tofte. Public defender Brent Olson on Monday asked 6th Judicial District Judge Eric Hylden to postpone Bigby's trial, currently scheduled to begin Jan. 11 in State District Court in Grand Marais.
Kirk Lee Bigby fatally shot Marcus Lee Roberts outside a holiday party at Bluefin Bay resort on the North Shore last December. That much has not been disputed. But the circumstances that led to the shooting — exactly how and why the longtime Finland resident drew his 45-caliber handgun and ended the life of a man he never met prior to that evening — is set to play out in court.