Court Proceedings

Brown County District Court

• Christopher D. Carnes, 24, 440 Merrill St. S.W. Hutchinson, was charged March 1 with felony financial transaction card fraud-use-no consent, amended complaint. He turned himself in Sunday, May 16, according to court administration.

An arrest warrant was requested before Carnes turned himself in. Bail without conditions was set at $10,000 May 17. A court hearing was set for 11:30 a.m., May 28.

According to court documents, New Ulm Police were called Feb. 16, 2021 by an individual who said their mother’s credit card had fraudulent charges made on it that day and that she last used the credit card at Wal-Mart Supercenter, New Ulm earlier in the day. The woman received a fraud notification from her credit card company for several additional charges made after visiting Wal-Mart.

The woman cancelled the Scheels Visa card that had six more fraudulent charges Feb. 16 totalling $1,331.79. The charges were $12.96 at Wal-Mart, $17.22 and $261.67 at Cash Wise Foods, $310.67 at Smokes Plus and $599.69 and $129.49 at New Ulm Tobacco.

The woman said she paid with her credit card at Wal-Mart, using a chip reader in the self-checkout. When he was notified of fraudulent charges, she was not able to find her credit card.

Law enforcement met a Wal-Mart manager to review video footage and receipts which we found and matched her credit card number.

Surveillance video showed the suspect, a male, wearing a blue “Speed Quality Innovations” sweat shirt and black hat, who went to the same self-checkout register after the victim left and scanned items and removed the credit card from the reader.

Smokes Plus had video surveillance that showed the suspect arriving at the store in a silver Dodge Avenger, wearing the same clothing observed in the Wal-Mart footage.

The New Ulm Tobacco owner said the alleged victim’s name was at the bottom of both receipts with a total amount of $729.14.

Officers viewed Cash Wise Foods security video and found the same man making purchases including two tobacco tins, then groceries, using the alleged victim’s credit card for a total purchase of $278.98.

• Felony fifth-degree drug possession-not small amount of marijuana, misdemeanor liquor possession by person under 21 and petty misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia charges were filed May 17 against Trenton J. Sweere, 20, 801 N. Franklin, New Ulm. A court appearance was set for 8:30 a.m., July 6.

According to court documents, New Ulm Police were parked near 20th South and Valley Street at 12:40 a.m. March 30, 2021 when their attention was drawn to a silver siden that failed to stop completely at the stop sign at Bridge Street at 20th South Street. The vehicle proceeded west onto 20th South and north on Broadway.

At about 7th South Street and Broadway, police saw the vehicle cross the center line and stopped a 2013 Ford Fusion at 5th South and Broadway. Police contacted the driver, identified as Sweere, and smelled a strong marijuana odor coming from it despite a very strong wind. He admitted to smoking marijuana earlier in the day and admitted there was marijuana wax in a pillow in the car.

Police searched the car and found a butane torch, a glass dish with what appeared to be marijuana wax, a clear, glass tube with burnt residue in the passenger front seat. In the back seat, police saw an open and empty 12-ounce beer can. Sweere told police there was more alcohol in the trunk. Seven unopened beer cans were retained as evidence.

The suspected marijuana wax tested positive for THC and weighed .46 grams.

• A felony issue dishonored check charge was filed May 17 against Jeremy P. Samstad, 39, 54 3rd Ave., St. James. A court appearance was set for 11:30 a.m., May 27.

According to court documents, a New Ulm Police investigator got a report on March 7 from Business 1 regarding insufficient funds checks being passed at their New Ulm location. The account on the check was for Jeremy Samstad-Samstad Trucking, Jeremy P. Samstad. The bank listed on the account drawn was from Pioneer bank.

A $99.48 check was written Aug. 13, 2020; $126 Aug. 13, 2020, and $186.76 on Aug. 14, 2020. A $30 fee for each returned check was included in the total amount of $502.24.

A demand letter was sent to Pioneer Bank March 8, 2021 for information on Samstad’s account for the checks. The investigator got information that Samstad’s account was closed by Pioneer Bank on Aug. 14, 2020 for lack of funds and overdraft notices.

A Pioneer bank signature card resembles that of Samstad who signed the checks at Business 1. The height and weight listed for Samstad on his revoked Minnesota driver’s license matched the individual seen in a Business 1 security video. A driver’s license photo matched the person in a Business 1 video.

• Felony fifth-degree drug possession-not small amount of marijuana, misdemeanor open bottle possession, and petty misdemeanor drug paraphernalia possession charges were filed May 17 against Aaron R. Rodewald, 27, 228 Shady Oak Rd. Courtland. A first appearance was set for 8:30 a.m. July 6.

According to court documents, New Ulm Police got an anonymous complaint at 6:02 p.m. March 27, 2021 that Rodewald was using drugs at Adams’ Park, 620 Cottonwood Street. Law enforcement arrived and saw a white 2013 GMC Sierra pickup in the park occupied by a male and female.

Approaching the vehicle, law enforcement smelled what appeared to be the odor of unburned marijuana coming from the truck. The officer could smell an alcoholic odor coming from the truck and saw two open Twisted Tea cans in a cup holder.

Police noticed the vehicle keys were in the ignition, searched the truck and found many containers labeled THC and Colorado Cannabis packaging in the center console. Law enforcement tested leafy green substances in the containers and got positive marijuana test results.

Law enforcement also found a green, metal grinder with what appeared to be ground up marijuana, two metal marijuana pipes and a larger, multi-colored pipe. The total weight of marijuana weighed 13.45 grams. All confiscated pipes appeared to have a burnt residue from smoking marijuana.

Police also found an open 375 ml bottle of vodka, a vape pen/cartridge, a silver, metal grinder, .5 gram of resinous THC liquid, 7 marijuana residue containers, and a can of Press seltzer alcoholic beverage.


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