Violent muggings caught on camera in downtown Minneapolis have led to aggravated robbery charges against 18 people, ranging in ages from 15 to 27, with additional charges of riot for some involved in a beating and robbery near Target Field.
Charges came down Monday against the teens and young adults, and could lead to lengthy sentences for some: First-degree aggravated robbery carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and/or a $35,000 fine.
The two events took place several blocks and two weeks apart from each other, but share a common participant: Adrian Cooper, 25, of Brooklyn Center, who was identified in surveillance tape from both incidents.
Cooper told cops he was present for the August 3 Target Field robbery, which he called "a fight," and admitted to hitting the victim, who Cooper says called him a "bitch," according to the complaint. Cooper was seen "walking off and laughing" on that tape, and told investigators "someone said something funny."
Cooper gave a similar story about the August 17 group mugging of a man near the light rail platform on 5th Street and Hennepin Avenue, saying he "got his 'licks in'" because the victim had called him a "bitch," the complaint says.
In that attack, which occurred after bar close, robbers stole an iPhone and a wallet containing $100; another $220 was taken from an ATM using the victim's debit card. Antonio Morrow, 21, admitted to police he was given the victim's wallet, though he said he "did not know any of the other individuals involved in this incident," acording to the complaint.
The victim in that case suffered a concussion, and has since suffered "bad headaches, memory loss, and difficulty holding thoughts," according to the complaint. Kareem Shavers, 27, seen kicking that victim "more than one time" in the head, according to charges against him, told police he was "high on MDMA" that night.
Any injuries suffered in the Target Field attack aren't spelled out in Monday's filings. That mugging occurred on the morning of August 3, as a man walked up to an ongoing dice game. Eventually the assembled crowd of "approximately 12 males" turns on him, according to the complaint from the Hennepin County Attorney's Office, and several join in to assault the seemingly random victim.
The suspects pulled down the victim's pants and rummaged through his pockets, punched and kicked him, jumped on him, hit him with a potted plant, and one rode over him with a bicycle, according to the complaint.
Two of those charged in that attack are 17, and being charged as juveniles. Both admitted it was them on the surveillance tape, charges say, with one saying the victim called him a "derogatory name" and that he "became angry and blacked out" during the attack. Both were also hit with charges of third-degree riot, a gross misdemeanor with a maximum punishment of a one-year sentence and/or $1,000 fine.
Names and details about the four 15-year-olds involved are not public.