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Fillmore County District Court

Fri, Apr 22nd, 2011
Posted in Court

On Monday, April 18, 2011, Jeremy James Shoemaker, a 27-year old male from Zumbrota, Minnesota, appeared before Judge Robert R. Benson in District Court facing three counts of theft. If convicted on all three counts, he could face a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and fines totaling $40,000.00. On December 12, 2010, police authorities received a report from a resident in Fountain that his 2006 Chevrolet Colorado pickup, valued at over $5,000.00 had been taken without his consent from outside his Fountain home. About a week later, Zumbrota police Officer Reisdorfer was on patrol duty when he observed a pickup matching the description of the one reported missing in Fountain. The driver was identified as the defendant, Jeremy Shoemaker, who took off running when Officer Reisdorfer approached him for questioning. A chase ensued that ended with Officer Reisdorfer tackling the defendant and taking him into custody. Shoemaker is currently serving time in the Minnesota correctional facility at St. Cloud for an unrelated crime. His next court date in connection with this latest charge has been set for May 23, 2011.

Jeremy Juan Kruegel, a 39-year old male from Preston, appeared in District Court before Judge Robert R. Benson facing 20 counts that involved, among other things, reckless driving, driving while under the influence of alcohol, leaving the scene of an accident, failure to stop at the scene of an accident, operating a vehicle in a grossly negligent manner, failure to notify law enforcement of an accident, speeding, careless driving without regard for the safety of others and attempting to get another individual to provide false information to the police. If convicted on all 20 counts, the defendant could face a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison, 1,080 days in county jail and fines totaling $57,000.00. On January 26, 2011, Sgt. Brian Miner was dispatched from the sheriff's office to the scene of an accident on Highway 16 near the John Deere dealership. Also dispatched from the sheriff's department was Bryan Guber and Preston Police Officer Blaine Sass. Upon arrival at the scene, they discovered a badly damaged vehicle but nobody was in or near the vehicle. A check of the registration revealed the vehicle belonged to Jeremy Kruegel. When questioned later that morning, Kruegel said he allegedly was on his way home from shooting darts at the Pub in Lanesboro when he swerved to avoid hitting a deer. That story later changed to allegedly hitting a deer and as a result crashing with one passenger inside the wrecked vehicle. That passenger did sustain some minor injuries to the back and legs. It was also alleged by another witness that the defendant had been drinking heavily earlier that night and refused to let anyone else drive, even though others told him he should not be driving. The defendant was seen driving recklessly under the influence of alcohol and had little regard for the safety of others, including passengers with him, while operating his vehicle. However, Kruegel allegedly told an informant to tell authorities the accident was the result of swerving to miss two deer on the highway. Judge Benson set unconditional bail at $12,000.00. Kruegel's next court appearance is May 2, 2011.

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