Rubber ball slasher sentenced to year in prison


All of Duluth's rubber balls can rest in peace after the city's infamous rubber ball slasher has been put away for a year. Christopher Neil Bjerkness, who has confessed to having a fetish for slashing rubber balls, could even be committed as a sexual psychopath if he didn't shape up.

One of the most bizarre stories to come out of Duluth, Bjerkness had a history of breaking into buildings that housed rubber exercise balls and slashing them with a knife to fulfill a sexual urge. In his latest, he admitted to breaking into the SMDC-Duluth Clinic May 30 and slashing balls.

He told the Duluth News Tribune he suffered from fetal alcohol syndrome, bipolar depression, and cerebral palsy. He couldn't explain his fetish, but says he isn't a threat to people, only balls.

Bjerkness will serve one year at the Northeast Regional Corrections Center and go through sex offender treatment. He will also undergo five years of supervised probation to avoid more prison time based on his plea agreement.

He could be civilly committed as a sexual psychopath if his behavior continues and the court rules that he poses a threat to the public. He would be committed for the rest of his life.