532 days after Samantha and Gianna Rucki were found on a ranch in rural Minnesota by the Lakeville Police Department on November 18, 2015, the initial stage of the criminal trials are over.
The Rucki sisters were taken by their mother Sandra Grazzini-Rucki in violation of a court order near their home in Lakeville, Minnesota on April 19, 2013.
David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing. He was was reunited with his daughters days after they were found and they live with him at the family’s home in Lakeville.
Two defendants are appealing their criminal convictions, and below is a recap of the initial criminal trials.
Lakeville Police Department
The investigation into disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki was lead by the Lakeville Police Department. The Lakeville Police department coordinated the search for the missing sisters with other law enforcement agencies, including the United States Marshals Service.
In May 2016, Det. Jim Dronen received the Medal of Commendation from Lakeville Police Chief Jeff Long for his work in locating the missing Rucki sisters.
Dakota County Attorney’s Office
The Dakota County Attorney’s Office charged four people related to the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki: Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, Dede (Deirdre) Evavold, Douglas Dahlen and his wife, Gina Dahlen.
The decision by Doug and Gina Dahlen to plead guilty ensured that Assistant Dakota County Attorney Kathy Kenna successfully prosecuted all of the people criminally charged related to the disappearance of the Rucki sisters. Continue reading