Posts tagged Missing in Minnesota

Court hearing held on sanctions against Michelle MacDonald

Judge Karen Asphaug heard arguments in a Dakota County courtroom today regarding the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions filed against Michelle MacDonald in response to her lawsuit against me and Missing in Minnesota. Judge Asphaug said she would be making a decision before our hearing on September 10 in Ramsey County regarding sanctions against MacDonald.

MacDonald’s attorney Karlowba R. Adams Powell made numerous false statements in court today and seemed unfamiliar with the messy procedural history created by MacDonald’s lawsuit. Adams Powell falsely claimed our attorney, Nathan Hansen filed duplicative pleadings in Dakota and Ramsey County. She also claimed Hansen was “harassing” MacDonald and accused him of “unprofessional conduct.”

Hansen corrected Adams Powell on her inaccurate statements in court.

MacDonald declines to answer questions about her representation of Grazzini-Rucki

After the hearing, and in the presence of both our attorney and MacDonald’s attorney, I asked MacDonald a few questions in the front lobby of the Dakota County Judicial Center. Multiple deputies with the Dakota County Sheriff’s Office we present during our brief exchange. Ten days ago, I wrote on Twitter that I planned on asking MacDonald questions at the courthouse about the disappearance of the Rucki sisters. We were scheduled to interview MacDonald last November, but she abruptly canceled and refused to reschedule the interview. Continue reading

UPDATE: Court hearing scheduled for sanctions against Michelle MacDonald

UPDATE (1:00 PM, Wednesday, August 15, 2018) – Larry Frost is no longer serving as Michelle MacDonald’s supervising attorney involving her lawsuit. Tomorrow’s hearing will focus on sanctions against Michelle MacDonald. This post has been updated to reflect this change.

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A court hearing has been scheduled in Dakota County for August 9, 2018, about the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions filed against Michelle MacDonald and her supervising attorney, Larry Frost, in response to MacDonald’s lawsuit.

Nathan M. Hansen served MacDonald and her supervising attorney, Larry A, Frost, a Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions on June 18, 2018, in response to the “frivolous and vexatious” lawsuit from MacDonald.

MacDonald and Frost were given 21 days to withdraw the lawsuit “with prejudice” or the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions would be filed with the court. Since the lawsuit was not dismissed “with prejudice” within 21 days, Hansen filed the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions against MacDonald and Frost yesterday.

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Court hearing scheduled for sanctions against Michelle MacDonald

A court hearing has been scheduled in Ramsey County for September 10, 2018, about the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions filed against Michelle MacDonald for filing the same “frivolous and vexatious” lawsuit in two counties.

Nathan M. Hansen served MacDonald a Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions on June 26, 2018, in response to the “frivolous and vexatious” lawsuit from MacDonald.

MacDonald was given 21 days to withdraw the lawsuit “with prejudice” or the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions would be filed with the court. Since the lawsuit was not dismissed “with prejudice” within 21 days, Hansen filed the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions against MacDonald in Ramsey County.

As detailed by Hansen in his memorandum, he spoke with MacDonald and she declined to dismiss the duplicate lawsuit filed in Ramsey County.

MacDonald is also facing sanctions in Dakota County, and she recently retained a new attorney. Continue reading

Facing sanctions and lawyers board investigation, MacDonald hires new attorney

Facing sanctions and an investigation by the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility, Michelle MacDonald has retained a new attorney.

A Certificate of Representation for Karlowba R. Adams Powell (pictured above left via Twitter profile) to represent Michelle MacDonald was filed last Friday in Ramsey County.

According to public records, Ms. Powell law license was suspended last year for 45 days. As with MacDonald, Ms. Powell is currently on probation for 2 years.

It is unclear at this time what role Ms. Powell will have in MacDonald’s legal defense.  Continue reading

Michelle MacDonald being investigated by lawyers board

Michelle MacDonald is being investigated by the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility for alleged violations for the Minnesota Rules of Professional Conduct governing licensed attorneys.

The investigation into the alleged violations by MacDonald was opened after Missing in Minnesota filed a formal complaint with the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility last week after MacDonald filed a “frivolous and vexatious” lawsuit against Missing in Minnesota, which appears to be in violation of an Order of the Minnesota Supreme Court which details the conditions by which MacDonald is allowed to practice law.

The Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility confirmed today in a letter that an investigation had been started based on the complaint filed by Missing in Minnesota which alleges numerous violations by MacDonald.

The filing of the complaint is permitted by the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility, as Missing in Minnesota is a defendant in a lawsuit filed by MacDonald. Continue reading

UPDATE – Attorney: MacDonald’s lawsuit is ‘frivolous and vexatious’

UPDATE (8:15 AM, Tuesday, June 26, 2018) – Michelle MacDonald and her supervising attorney, Larry Frost, were served a Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions in Ramsey County for filing the same “frivolous and vexatious” lawsuit in two counties. Last week, Michelle MacDonald and her supervising attorney, Larry Frost, were served with a Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions in Dakota County.

As detailed by our attorney Nathan Hansen in his memorandum, he spoke with MacDonald and she declined to dismiss the duplicate lawsuit filed in Ramsey County. MacDonald’s supervising attorney, Larry Frost, has not responded to our attorney’s communications.

Allison Mann explained last night on Twitter, that it is not proper to file the same lawsuit in two counties. There are now two clocks running on MacDonald to dismiss the suit. Each Rule 11 Motion (Dakota and Ramsey) started a separate 21-day deadline.

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Michelle MacDonald has filed a “frivolous and vexatious” lawsuit, which appears to be in violation of an Order of the Minnesota Supreme Court which details the conditions by which MacDonald is allowed to practice law, according to an attorney for Missing in Minnesota and Michael Brodkorb.

Nathan M. Hansen (above left), served MacDonald and her supervising attorney, Larry A, Frost, a Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions this afternoon in response to MacDonald’s lawsuit filed last week in Dakota County.

“The safeguards set forth in the Order of the Minnesota Supreme Court relating to her practice of law have been ignored by Ms. MacDonald and her cohorts,” wrote Hansen.

Larry Frost, MacDonald’s supervising attorney.

As detailed in Hansen’s Memorandum of Law, “[p]laintiffs have wholly failed to articulate any claim in their complaint that would cause this court to rule in their favor. As such, the complaint should be dismissed with prejudice and without further litigation.”

MacDonald and Frost have been given 21 days to withdraw the lawsuit “with prejudice” or the Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions will be filed with the court. Continue reading

MacDonald sues Michael Brodkorb and Missing in Minnesota

Michelle MacDonald served a lawsuit today on Michael Brodkorb, and Missing in Minnesota, alleging defamation, defamation per se, and defamation by implication.

MacDonald is suing in part over the publication of a booking photo from her arrest during a court hearing involving Sandra Grazzini-Rucki on September 12, 2013, as well as our reporting that she was labeled a “person of interest” by the Lakeville Police Department in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki.

Missing in Minnesota has been threatened with legal action since 2016 by MacDonald over the use of her public booking from her arrest. In her own book, MacDonald acknowledged that law enforcement considered her a “person of interest” in the disappearance of the Rucki sisters.

Both Brodkorb and Missing in Minnesota will vigorously defend themselves in this legal action.

Below is a copy of the lawsuit served on Brodkorb and Missing and Minnesota earlier today.

Missing in Minnesota: the power in numbers

10 days ago, Missing in Minnesota posted about a missing child, a sixteen-year-old boy who was missing from Hutchinson. We are so pleased to be able to report that Dominick Curtiss was found safe five days later.

That alone is the happiest of endings to that story.

But what happened with that post is something that we are truly grateful for and something that we want you to know.

In less than a week’s time, the post about Dominick Curtiss was shared over 4,000 times and reached over 256,000 people. Those are incredible numbers!

We started this Facebook page less than one year ago as an extension of MissinginMinnesota.com.

The website was set up initially by Michael Brodkorb as a way to report on the legal developments about the adults charged in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki. When he started, he thought by this time, the case would be closed; there would be nothing left to report on.

Unfortunately for the Rucki family, the case has not closed. Continue reading

Pizza Ranch fundraiser for White Horse Ranch canceled

A fundraiser hosted by Pizza Ranch to benefit a ranch where two missing sisters were held for 942 days was abruptly canceled after widespread public outrage.

WhiteHorseRanchFundraiserAccording to the promotional materials for the fundraiser, Pizza Ranch in Alexandria, Minnesota would be “donating a portion of their sales during that time” to White Horse Ranch, which is owned by Doug and Gina Dahlen.

Doug and Gina Dahlen were sentenced in May to one year in jail for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki from Lakeville, Minnesota.

Earlier today, the staff at Pizza Ranch confirmed they would be donating a portion of their sales to the White Horse Ranch. After being informed about the controversy surrounding the ranch and the criminal history of both Doug and Gina Dahlen, staff insisted the fundraiser would still be held.

But hours after Missing in Minnesota posted details about the fundraiser on Facebook, the event was canceled.

As of 6:00 pm last evening, the Facebook post published by Missing in Minnesota has been viewed by over 13,000 people with over 250 comments.

Dan Gray, the owner of Pizza Ranch where the fundraiser to benefit the White Horse Ranch was scheduled to be held contacted Missing in Minnesota this morning to apologize for scheduling the event.

“I apologize,” said Gray, adding “if I ever do it again, I’ll do a little more research.” Gray noted that he hosts numerous fundraising events for the community each year.

Continue reading

Missing in Minnesota announces addition of Allison Mann

Missing in Minnesota announced today the addition of Allison Mann as a contributing author. Mann will also provide strategic direction as Missing in Minnesota transitions from an online format to additional mediums yet to be announced.

“Allison has a sharp legal mind, and passionate commitment to help tell this important story,” said Michael Brodkorb, who’s reporting on this story began with the Star Tribune in 2015.

Brodkorb later founded Missing in Minnesota in July 2016, which provides detailed news, analysis, and commentary on the continuing developments involving this case.

Mann is a paralegal with Elliott Law Offices and lives in Lakeville, Minnesota with her husband and family.

Elliott Law Offices provides legal services to David Rucki and his family, but Elliott Law Offices is not affiliated with Missing in Minnesota.

“Two kids disappeared in Minnesota for 944 days,” said Mann, who added, “as a mother and a paralegal, I can’t help but see the importance of sharing the story of how and why it happened.”

Missing in Minnesota is the true story of about the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki, who vanished from Lakeville, Minnesota on April 19, 2013, during a custody and divorce proceeding involving their parents.

The sisters were taken by their mother in violation of a court order. The girls’ father, David Rucki, kept searching for his missing daughters for 944 days, until they were found by law enforcement on November 18, 2015.

David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing. Rucki was reunited with his daughters days after they were found and they live with him at the family’s home in Lakeville.