Victim found short time later in trunk of suspect vehicle
By Ryan Gueningsman
LORETTO, MN Medina Police Chief Ed Belland is offering reassurance that the Loretto community is safe following a kidnapping that took place at a Chippewa Road residence Wednesday evening.
A 37-year-old Loretto man had returned home at approximately 9:21 p.m. when his wife reported to authorities her husband may have been taken by the occupants of a red Dodge Charger, according to the Medina Police Department.
A short time later, a red Dodge Charger was located by an officer in the area of Pioneer Trail and Highway 55.
When the officer approached, two suspects fled on foot, according to the police department. The victim was found unharmed inside the vehicle’s trunk.
After an area search involving several agencies from the west metro, several K9 units, and the Minnesota State Patrol helicopter, William Charles Graham, 30, and Ronald Jermaine Jackson, 29, were taken into custody just after midnight.
The two were booked into the Hennepin County Adult Detention Center on probable cause kidnapping, and the victim was reunited with his family.
Belland said the incident does not appear to be random, and said there are no other suspects being sought.
“There is no danger to the public,” Belland said in a press release regarding the incident.
Investigation of the incident shows the victim is a manager of a Verizon retail store in Minneapolis.
The suspects had followed the victim to the location of the abduction. As the victim was exiting his vehicle, one of the suspects approached him with a gun and pulled him towards the suspects’ vehicle, according to the Medina Police Department. The suspects zip-tied his hands and shoved him into the trunk of the Dodge Charger.
It is believed the suspects’ intentions were to take keys to the retail store to gain entry to burglarize it, according to Belland.
As of press time, both Graham and Jackson remain in custody without the option of bail at the Hennepin County Detention center.
The incident is still under investigation by the Medina Police Department.
Previous cell phone thefts, threats
A KSTP report from May indicated Graham was charged in Hennepin County District Court with felony charges of first-degree aggravated robbery and kidnapping for allegedly stealing 83 cell phones worth more than $64,000 from a T-Mobile store in Minneapolis, and then locking a store employee in an inventory cage.
A man, later identified as Graham, approached the store employee May 20 while he was opening the store for the day, according to a criminal complaint. Graham displayed a handgun in his waistband and said, “Stay calm and no funny business.”
Graham forced the employee into the business, told him to lock the door, and then made him disarm the alarm, the complaint said. Graham took the employee’s driver’s license and said, “If the cops are out there, I’m coming to your house,” and threatened to hurt his family, reported KSTP.