Category State vs. Gina Dahlen

Doug and Gina Dahlen violated jail work release rules

During their brief time in jail for their role in the disappearance of two sisters from Lakeville, Minnesota, Doug and Gina Dahlen repeatedly violated jail work release rules, based on documents obtained by Missing in Minnesota.

The repeated rule violations raise questions about the supervision the Dahlens received by jail staff, and if the clear violation of jail work release rules warrant further investigation by law enforcement and corrections officials in Minnesota.

Easy time in Traverse County

Doug and Gina Dahlen were released from the Traverse County Jail on Friday, June 2, after serving just 20 days in jail for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The Dahlens were released after their attorneys successfully petitioned the court to allow the Dahlens to receive credit for good behavior in jail.

Judge Karen Asphaug permitted the Dahlens to participate in a work release program throughout the term of their sentence. Work release gives inmates leave from jail to maintain employment while serving their sentence. But strict rules exist for work release programs and vary by county and program.

The Traverse County Jail, located in Wheaton, Minnesota has specific guidelines which must be followed by inmates participating in the work release program.

Days prior to their release, attorneys for Doug and Gina Dahlen filed a motion to clarify their sentence requesting early release based on “good conduct.”

As part of this motion the attorneys obtained information from the Traverse County Jail regarding the Dahlens’ conduct while in custody. According to correspondence filed with the motion pleadings, the Dahlens were labeled “model inmates” by Brenda Bartz, the Traverse County Jail Administrator. This alleged statement by Bartz was the basis for the motion requesting early release by the Dahlens. Continue reading

Doug and Gina Dahlen released from jail after serving only 20 days

Doug and Gina Dahlen were released from the Traverse County Jail this afternoon, after serving just 20 days in jail for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki.

Samantha and Gianna’s father, David Rucki, released a statement yesterday in response to an order granting Doug and Gina Dahlen an early release from jail.

In his statement, David Rucki expressed his strong frustration that Doug and Gina Dahlen would serve only 20 days in jail:

I am appalled at the decision to allow the Dahlens to be released from jail after serving only 20 days. During the 942 days my missing children were held by the Dahlens, they were denied access to any medical treatment and education.

The Dahlens robbed my children of their youth, their family, their friends, and their life. My children and family were victimized by the Dahlens and we are still working together as a family to fully recover from the pain and trauma they inflicted. 

Today’s decision to allow the Dahlens to stroll out of jail after serving only 20 days trivializes the severity of their crimes and the pain inflicted on my children and family.”

Doug and Gina Dahlen, pleaded guilty for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki, and were later sentenced  to one year in jail. The Dahlens’ full jail sentence was stayed, pending the successful completion of two-years probation and a jail sentence of 31 days. Continue reading

Dahlens will be out of jail tomorrow; David Rucki ‘appalled’ by court’s decision

David Rucki released a statement today in response to an order granting Doug and Gina Dahlen an early release from jail after serving only 20 days for their involvement in the disappearance of his children for 944 days.

In his statement, David Rucki expressed his strong frustration that Doug and Gina Dahlen served only 20 days in jail:

I am appalled at the decision to allow the Dahlens to be released from jail after serving only 20 days. During the 942 days my missing children were held by the Dahlens, they were denied access to any medical treatment and education.

The Dahlens robbed my children of their youth, their family, their friends, and their life. My children and family were victimized by the Dahlens and we are still working together as a family to fully recover from the pain and trauma they inflicted. 

Today’s decision to allow the Dahlens to stroll out of jail after serving only 20 days trivializes the severity of their crimes and the pain inflicted on my children and family.”

Doug and Gina Dahlen, pleaded guilty for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki, and were later sentenced  to one year in jail. The Dahlens’ full jail sentence was stayed, pending the successful completion of two-years probation and a jail sentence of 31 days. Continue reading

Dahlens want out of jail after serving only 20 days

UPDATE: The Dahlens have been granted an early release from jail. We’ll have more information soon on Missing in Minnesota.

Doug and Gina Dahlen, who pleaded guilty for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki, filed a request with Dakota County to be released from jail tomorrow, after serving only 20 days in jail.

On May 2, 2017, Doug and Gina Dahlen were each sentenced to one year in jail by Judge Karen Asphaug. The Dahlens’ full jail sentence was stayed, pending the successful completion of two-years probation, and after they served 31 days in jail – one day for each month the Rucki sisters were held at their ranch in Herman, Minnesota.

But in a motion filed yesterday with Dakota County, the Dahlens’ attorneys requested that Doug and Gina Dahlen be released from jail on Friday, June 2, 2017, after serving only 20 days of their 31 day sentence in jail.

The Dahlens are serving their jail sentence in Traverse County and according to public records, the Dahlens are currently scheduled to be released from jail on June 13, 2017. Continue reading

Missing and found in Minnesota: Doug and Gina Dahlen

Doug and Gina Dahlen, who pleaded guilty for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki, did not report to jail in Dakota County or Grant County to serve their jail sentence yesterday morning, triggering widespread confusion as to their whereabouts.

Based on information uncovered by Missing in Minnesota, it was later determined that the Dahlens had reported to jail in Traverse County. The jail in Traverse County is located in Wheaton, Minnesota and after traveling to the jail late yesterday, Missing in Minnesota was able to confirm that Doug and Gina Dahlen were in custody.

But questions remain unanswered today as to how and why the Dahlens were permitted to report to jail in Traverse County, when they live in Grant County, and were criminally charged and prosecuted in Dakota County. Continue reading

532 days after the Rucki sisters were found, the initial criminal trials are over

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

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Picture source: Missing in Minnesota

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

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Picture source: Missing in Minnesota

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

Doug and Gina Dahlen sentenced to jail, probation for role in disappearance of Rucki sisters

Doug and Gina Dahlen were each sentenced to one year in jail today at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki from Lakeville, Minnesota. The Dahlens’ full jail sentence was stayed, pending the successful completion of two-years probation.

They both will serve 31 days in jail – one day for each month the Rucki sisters were held at their ranch in Herman, Minnesota.

On April 19, 2013, the Rucki sisters disappeared during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents – Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki.

The sisters were taken near their home in Lakeville by their mother in violation of a court order and were later driven to the Dahlen’s ranch in northern Minnesota by their mother, Grazzini-Rucki and her friend, Dede Evavold on April 21, 2013.

Doug and Gina Dahlen, who pleaded guilty in January, admitted in court they knew David Rucki had been awarded custody of his children and that they failed to contact to David Rucki or law enforcement that the missing Rucki kids were living on their ranch. The Dahlens had each been charged with six felony counts for their role in the disappearance of the Rucki sisters.

By pleading guilty to one count, the remaining counts against the Dahlens were dismissed. Doug and Gina Dahlen are scheduled to report to jail on May 16, 2017, at 9AM.  Continue reading

Doug and Gina Dahlen sentenced tomorrow for role in disappearance of Rucki sisters

Doug and Gina Dahlen will be sentenced tomorrow at 9AM at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings for their role in the disappearance of two sisters from Lakeville, Minnesota. On April 19, 2013, Samantha and Gianna Rucki disappeared during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents – Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki.

The sisters were taken near their home in Lakeville by their mother in violation of a court order and were later driven to the Dahlen’s ranch in northern Minnesota by their mother, Grazzini-Rucki and her friend, Dede Evavold on April 21, 2013.

Doug and Gina Dahlen, who pleaded guilty in January, admitted in court that they knew David Rucki had been awarded custody of his children and that they failed to contact to David Rucki or law enforcement that the missing Rucki kids were living on their ranch. The Dahlens had each been charged with six felony counts for their role in the disappearance of the Rucki sisters.

By pleading guilty to one count, the remaining counts against the Dahlens were dismissed. Continue reading

Dahlens accuse Grazzini-Rucki and Evavold of lying

Days before they are sentenced for their role in the disappearance of two sisters from Lakeville, Minnesota, Doug and Gina Dahlen accuse both Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and Dede Evavold of lying.

Court documents filed earlier this week by attorneys Travis Keil and Kyle White allege Doug and Gina Dahlen were misled by Grazzini-Rucki and Evavold about the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki.

On April 19, 2013, the sisters disappeared during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents – Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki. The girls were taken by their mother near their home in Lakeville, Minnesota, in violation of a court order.

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Doug Dahlen, Gina Dahlen. Picture source: Dakota County Sheriff’s Office

The Rucki sisters were later driven to the Dahlen’s residence at the White Horse Ranch in Herman, Minnesota on April 21, 2013.

According to the criminal complaint and court testimony, the girls were driven to the ranch by Grazzini-Rucki and Evavold.

The Dahlens pleaded guilty in January and admitted in court that they knew David Rucki had been awarded custody of his children and that they failed to contact to David Rucki and law enforcement that the missing Rucki kids were living on their ranch.

The Dahlens will both be sentenced on May 2, 2017, at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings.

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Short-changed: Dede Evavold has paid only $375 of $12K owed for restitution, fines, & fees

Dede Evavold has only paid $375 of the $12,317 in restitution, fines, and fees assessed by Dakota County after she was convicted last year for her role in the disappearance of two sisters from Lakeville.

Evavold was charged in December 2015 related to her involvement in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters were taken by their mother near their home on the night of April 19, 2013, during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents – Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki.

She was convicted in September on six felony counts of deprivation of parental rights related to the disappearance of the girls. Evavold is appealing her conviction.  Continue reading

ABC’s ’20/20′ episode: One year later

On April 8, 2016, ABC’s “20/20” first broadcast “Footprints in the Snow”, which focused on the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters were taken by their mother near their home on the night of April 19, 2013, during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents – Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki.

Last Saturday, ABC’s “20/20” rebroadcast the episode with updated information.

Since the episode first aired last April, there have been multiple developments involving many of the people interviewed.

David Rucki

As highlighted on “20/20”, David Rucki was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing. David Rucki was reunited with his daughters days after they were found on a rural ranch in northern Minnesota.

They live with him and their other siblings at the family’s home in Lakeville. “20/20” updated their show with new home movies of David celebrating Christmas last December with all of his children.

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Sandra Grazzini-Rucki. Picture source: Dakota County Sheriff’s Office

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki

Since being convicted in July 2016 on six felony counts of deprivation of parental rights, Grazzini-Rucki and her supporters have continued their behavior of making false allegations against David Rucki, his family, the media, law enforcement, and the judiciary. Grazzini-Rucki had tried to stop the rebroadcast of the episode of ABC’s “20/20” which found no documentation to verify Grazzini-Rucki’s claim that she was abused by David Rucki. Grazzini-Rucki had taken to Facebook, calling the show “rank propaganda” and encouraging people to register complaints.

Grazzini-Rucki’s disdain for law enforcement and the court system has become more flagrant, her rhetoric more incendiary, and her behavior increasingly dangerous. Grazzini-Rucki is currently on probation for her role in the disappearance of her children, but announced earlier this month that she and others will be targeting the family members of judges, attorneys, and county staff, including their children.

Grazzini-Rucki is appealing her criminal conviction. Continue reading

Dahlens plead guilty in court for role in disappearance of Rucki sisters

The owners of a ranch in rural northern Minnesota each pleaded guilty today to one count of depravation of parental rights for their role in the disappearance of two sisters from Lakeville, Minnesota.

On April 19, 2013, Samantha and Gianna Rucki disappeared during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents – Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and David Rucki.

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Doug Dahlen, Gina Dahlen. Picture source: Dakota County Sheriff’s Office

Doug and Gina Dahlen both admitted in a court hearing this morning at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings, that Samantha and Gianna Rucki were delivered to their residence at the White Horse Ranch in Herman, Minnesota on April 21, 2013.

According to the criminal complaint, the girls were driven to the ranch by their mother, Grazzini-Rucki and her friend, Dede Evavold.

Gina Dahlen cried as she stood before Judge Karen Asphaug and pleaded guilty to knowingly depriving David Rucki of his parental rights after he was awarded custody of all five of his children in November 2013. In total, Samantha and Gianna were held at the White Horse Ranch for 942 days.

Both Doug and Gina Dahlen admitted in court that they knew David Rucki had been awarded custody of his children and that they failed to contact to David Rucki and law enforcement that the missing Rucki kids were living on their ranch. Continue reading

Grazzini-Rucki boasts she’s violated court orders, talked with co-defendants

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki boasted in a recent radio interview that she has violated court orders by communicating with additional people who have been criminally charged related to the disappearance of her two daughters.

On December 21, 2016, Grazzini-Rucki was interviewed by Fletcher Long for his show, “The Long Version.” During the interview, Grazzini-Rucki was asked if she had communicated with Doug and Gina Dahlen.

According to the criminal complaints filed against the Dahlens, Samantha and Gianna Rucki were delivered to the Dahlen’s residence at the White Horse Ranch in northern Minnesota on April 21, 2013 by their mother, Grazzini-Rucki and her friend, Dede Evavold.

Grazzini-Rucki was convicted in July on six counts of deprivation of parent rights for her role in the disappearance of her daughters. Evavold was also found guilty in September on six counts of depravation of parental rights.

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Additional criminal charges filed in disappearance of missing Lakeville sisters

The Dakota County Attorney’s Office has filed additional criminal charges against Doug and Gina Dahlen for their involvement in the disappearance of two sisters from Lakeville.

Four additional felony charges of  deprivation of parental rights have been filed against the Dahlens, who have now been charged with a total of six felony counts for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki.

The girls disappeared on April 19, 2013, during a custody and divorce dispute involving their parents.

On November 18, 2015 – 944 days after they disappeared – the girls were found living on the Dahlens’ ranch in northern Minnesota by law enforcement, headed by the Lakeville Police Department.

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Dede Evavold, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki. Picture source: Dakota County Sheriff’s Office

According to the amended criminal complaints, Samantha and Gianna Rucki were delivered to the Dahlen’s residence at the White Horse Ranch in northern Minnesota on April 21, 2013 by the girls’ mother, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and her friend, Dede Evavold.

Continue reading

Evavold found guilty for her role in disappearance of Rucki sisters

Deirdre (Dede) Evavold was convicted this afternoon on six counts of depravation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki.

It took the jury at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hasting less than an hour to convict Evavold on all criminal counts she faced.

Evavold showed no emotion when the verdict was announced, but she later broke down and started crying when Judge Karen Asphaug remanded Evavold into immediate custody.

A Dakota County Sheriff’s Deputy needed to help Evavold stand, as she was visibly shaken and distraught. Evavold was removed from the courtroom and booked into jail in Hastings.

Evavold will remain in custody without bail until her sentencing hearing on November 10, 2016.

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