Posts tagged Stephen Grigsby

Ooops: Another fake news story from Grazzini-Rucki supporter retracted

An online story published by a key supporter of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki which made false and misleading claims about jury tampering during Grazzini-Rucki’s criminal trial was taken down by the media outlet after being contacted by Missing in Minnesota about the inaccurate facts contained in the story.

The inaccurate story was published by Michael Volpe for Communities Digital News last Thursday, but the story was later edited with multiple corrections by Jacquie Kubin, President of Communities Digital News, and then republished. Continue reading

Lawyers Board: Michelle MacDonald’s ‘serious misconduct’ warrants suspension of her law license

Michelle MacDonald’s behavior during a family court hearing for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was described as “the ultimate dereliction of an attorney’s duty, and is unquestionably serious misconduct warranting suspension” in a brief filed by the Minnesota Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board involving the attorney complaint against MacDonald.

A judicial referee appointed by the Minnesota Supreme Court recommended in January that MacDonald’s law license be suspended for a minimum of 60 days, followed by two years of probation, which would include a mental health evaluation.

The recommendation by Judge Heather Sweetland comes after a two-day hearing was held last November about an attorney complaint filed against MacDonald, who was a candidate for the Minnesota Supreme Court in 2014 and 2016.

MacDonald is appealing the recommendation that her law license be suspended and the brief filed by Susan M. Humiston, Director of the Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board. Continue reading

Fake news used by Grazzini-Rucki and her allies to distort the truth

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and her allies continue to use fake news and propaganda to distort the truth involving her criminal conviction. The latest example comes from Michael Volpe, who writes for Communities Digital News, and who also co-authored a book with Grazzini-Rucki’s family court attorney Michelle MacDonald about this case.

In a post published last Friday, Mr. Volpe repeated a false statement that David Rucki was present in the room with Samantha Rucki while she testified during her mother’s criminal trial last July.

The inaccurate claim that David Rucki and his sister, Dr. Tammy Love were in the room with Samantha when she testified has been continually used as a talking-point by supporters of Grazzini-Rucki since she was convicted for her role in the disappearance of her children.

Mr. Volpe is based in Chicago, Illinois and he disseminates Grazzini-Rucki’s propaganda masqueraded as news. He has never attended any of the court proceedings involving Sandra Grazzini-Rucki and the other adults charged and convicted for their role in the disappearance of Samantha and Gianna Rucki. Mr. Volpe is frequently interviewed with Grazzini-Rucki on podcasts about her criminal case and family court drama.

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On This Date: Michelle MacDonald makes her first appearance in court for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki

Michelle MacDonald made her first appearance in family court on behalf of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki on February 26, 2013. MacDonald’s work on behalf of Grazzini-Rucki created controversy and turmoil in court, and MacDonald’s law license may be suspended for her conduct while serving as Grazzini-Rucki’s attorney.

Minutes into the court hearing, the judge said “this is not the way that I expected to start off this hearing.”

According to court documents from February 23, 2013, MacDonald requested the court take a roll call to determine the names of everyone in the courtroom, including members of the public. The court documents also show that MacDonald repeatedly interrupted the court proceedings, with MacDonald later apologizing for comments she made during the court hearing. Continue reading

Michelle MacDonald discloses law enforcement considered her a ‘suspect’

Michelle MacDonald has disclosed law enforcement considered her a “suspect” in the disappearance of the two sisters from Lakeville, according to a publication co-authored by MacDonald.

MacDonald serves as Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s family court attorney.  Grazzini-Rucki was convicted last July on six felony counts of depravation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of her two daughters, Samantha and Gianna Rucki.

In the publication, MacDonald provides details on a phone conversation she had with Lieutenant Jason Polinski of the Lakeville Police Department. According to MacDonald, Polinski said she was no longer considered a suspect:

“Finally, he said I was no longer a suspect unless someone came in with evidence I participated in the girls’ disappearance and I appeared on early on with eighteen others.”  

MacDonald also admits in her publication that she “suspected the only evidence they have is that I’ve been Sandra’s attorney throughout her ordeal.”  Continue reading

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s dangerous quest

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki walked out of jail last October looking to pick a fight after she finished the first portion of her jail sentence for her role in the disappearance of her daughters.

I doubt anyone believed Grazzini-Rucki was going to be reformed after serving just over 30 days in jail.

But even I was surprised, when hours after being released from jail, I found Grazzini-Rucki standing by my car as I left the Dakota County Northern Service Center in West St. Paul. Grazzini-Rucki momentarily blocked my exit, as she stood behind my car as I attempted to back out of my parking spot. I stepped out of my car and asked her, “can I help you with something?” Grazzini-Rucki said no and she walked back to a waiting vehicle.

Since October, 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 has started down a very dangerous road. She thrives off of chaos and the attention it brings. Not satisfied with the damage and pain she has already inflicted, Grazzini-Rucki is working to create more lawlessness in society. Continue reading

MN Supreme Court referee recommends suspension of Michelle MacDonald’s law license

A judicial referee appointed by the Minnesota Supreme Court has recommended that Michelle MacDonald’s law license be suspended for a minimum of 60 days, followed by two years of probation, which would include a mental health evaluation.

The recommendation by Judge Heather Sweetland comes after a two day hearing was held in November about an attorney complaint filed against MacDonald, who was a candidate for the Minnesota Supreme Court in 2014 and 2016, and who also serves as Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s family court attorney.

Below are the findings issued by Judge Sweetland regarding MacDonald.

Michelle MacDonald – Referee Findings Fact, Conclusion of Law, Recommendation for Discipline – January 03,… by Michael Brodkorb on Scribd

Attorney complaint against MacDonald alleged violation of rules governing attorney conduct

The 16-page petition for disciplinary action for violating of rules governing attorney conduct was filed against MacDonald by the Director of the Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board, Susan M. Humiston

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Sandra Grazzini-Rucki released from jail

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was released from jail on Monday after being held in custody since early November for multiple probation violations.

At a court hearing at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings, Judge Karen Asphaug again determined that Grazzini-Rucki had violated her probabtion since being released from jail in October.

Judge Asphaug placed Grazzini-Rucki on “court-supervised probation” because Grazzini-Rucki repeatedly refused to provide Dakota County Community Corrections (DCCC) with a verifiable address and she would not comply with GPS monitoring.

DCCC will no longer supervise Grazzini-Rucki except to determine whether Grazzini-Rucki has completed her required 12 days of Sentencing of Service for the next six years.

Starting in 2017, Grazzini-Rucki will begin serving 15 days in jail on November 18 – the anniversary of the day her daughters were found – for the next six years.

In July, Grazzini-Rucki was found guilty on six counts of deprivation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of her daughters, Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters ran from their home on April 19, 2013 during a custody and divorce proceeding involving their parents.

The girls’ father, David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing.

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Another arrest warrant issued for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki

For the second time this month, a warrant had been issued for the arrest of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki for violating conditions of her probation.

Earlier this week, Grazzini-Rucki was ordered to provide the Dakota County Community Corrections (DCCC) with her residential address and wear a GPS monitor until DCCC was able to verify her residential address.

But Grazzini-Rucki is physically refusing to allow a GPS monitor to be attached to her leg and she will not provide DCCC with her current residential address.

A warrant was issued for Grazzini-Rucki’s arrest yesterday and a probation violation hearing has been scheduled for next Monday at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings.

In July, Grazzini-Rucki was found guilty on six counts of deprivation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of her daughters, Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters ran from their home on April 19, 2013 during a custody and divorce proceeding involving their parents.

The girls’ father, David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing.

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Court again denies Grazzini-Rucki’s request to execute sentence

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki appeared in court today at the Dakota County Judicial Center in Hastings today for a hearing about her alleged probation violation.

Grazzini-Rucki has been jail since last week after a warrant was issued for her arrest because she allegedly failed to “maintain contact with probation” and she failed “to notify probation within 72 hours of any change in address, employment, and phone number.”

At the hearing today, Grazzini-Rucki made another request to Judge Karen Asphaug to execute her sentence by continuing to remain in jail, rather than serving probation. Grazzini-Rucki is now being represented by a public defender, as her criminal defense attorney, Stephen Grigsby, withdrew as her attorney last month.

Judge Asphaug denied Grazzini-Rucki’s request to execute her sentence, as she did at a hearing in October.

Throughout the brief hearing, Grazzini-Rucki acted inappropriately in court.

Grazzini-Rucki smiled and giggled during the proceedings, especially after Judge Asphaug denied her request to execute her sentence.  The judge also instructed Grazzini-Rucki to pay attention to the proceedings, as Grazzini-Rucki kept looking into the gallery of the courtroom at two of her supporters.

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Sandra Grazzini-Rucki back in jail for violating probation

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki is back in jail, as she surrendered to authorities in Washington County last evening after a warrant was issued for her arrest yesterday for violating her probation. 

Court staff in Washington County confirmed Grazzini-Rucki was in custody, but she was not scheduled to appear in front of a judge today. Grazzini-Rucki has since been transferred from Washington County to the supervision of Dakota County.

According to court documents filed in Dakota County, an arrest warrant was issued for Grazzini-Rucki because she failed to “maintain contact with probation” and she failed “to notify probation within 72 hours of any change in address, employment, and phone number.”

In July, Grazzini-Rucki was found guilty on six counts of deprivation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of her daughters, Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters ran from their home on April 19, 2013 during a custody and divorce proceeding involving their parents.

The girls’ father, David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing.

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Arrest warrant issued for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki

According to court documents filed in Dakota County, an arrest warrant was issued for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki because she failed to “maintain contact with probation” and she failed “to notify probation within 72 hours of any change in address, employment, and phone number.”

Grazzini-Rucki was released from jail last week, finishing the first portion of her jail sentence which will continue over the next six years. Below is the order from Dakota County granting the request for a warrant to be issued for Grazzini-Rucki’s arrest.

ArrestwarrantSandraGrazziniRucki11022016

In July, Grazzini-Rucki was found guilty on six counts of deprivation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of her daughters, Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters ran from their home on April 19, 2013 during a custody and divorce proceeding involving their parents.

The girls’ father, David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing.

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Grazzini-Rucki released from jail, Rucki family concerned for their safety

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was released from jail early this morning, finishing the first portion of her jail sentence which will continue over the next six years. But just hours after being released from jail today, Grazzini-Rucki wasted no time to start engaging in bizarre and threatening behavior.

As I left the Dakota County Northern Service Center in West St. Paul this morning around 8:15 AM, I was shocked to find Grazzini-Rucki standing by my car, taking notes.  I got into my car to leave, but Grazzini-Rucki then walked around to the back of my car and continued to take more notes. I stepped out of my car, as Grazzini-Rucki was blocking my car and asked her, “can I help you with something?” Grazzini-Rucki said no and she walked back to a waiting vehicle.

Confusion over Grazzini-Rucki’s release from jail

The tentative release date for Grazzini-Rucki’s release from jail was today, but the Victim Information Notification Everyday (VINE) system failed to send an alert that Grazzini-Rucki had been released. The online inmate search for Dakota County incorrectly listed Grazzini-Rucki as an inmate this morning even hours after she had been released from jail.

This is why I was so shocked to see Grazzini-Rucki standing by my car this morning, as I had not received a VINE alert announced Grazzini-Rucki had been released, and Dakota County still listed Grazzini-Rucki as an inmate on their website.

The VINE alert announcing that Grazzini-Rucki had been released from jail was not sent out until 10:57AM, 4 hours after Grazzini-Rucki left jail.  The Dakota County Sheriff’s Office said this morning that a “glitch” delayed the public notification of her release from jail.

Rucki family concerned for their safety

In July, Grazzini-Rucki was found guilty on six counts of deprivation of parental rights for her role in the disappearance of her daughters, Samantha and Gianna Rucki. The sisters ran from their home on April 19, 2013 during a custody and divorce proceeding involving their parents.

The girls’ father, David Rucki, was awarded full custody of all five of his children in November 2013, while two of his daughters remained missing.

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Disciplinary hearing against MacDonald scheduled for November

A hearing will be held in November involving the attorney complaint filed against Michelle MacDonald, who is currently a candidate for the Minnesota Supreme Court, and also serves as Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s family court attorney.

A 16-page petition for disciplinary action for violating of rules governing attorney conduct was filed against MacDonald by the Director of the Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board, Susan M. Humiston

The complaint against MacDonald is focused on her behavior during family court proceedings involving Grazzini-Rucki and her legal representation of Joseph Francis D’Costa. The complaint alleges MacDonald disorganization required the trial to last longer than necessary, adding that MacDonald offered exhibits that “were a mess.”

MacDonald’s attorney told Minnesota Lawyer in August that she will fight the complaint.

On her campaign website, MacDonald encourages people to attend her disciplinary hearing, but promotes the wrong date of the hearing. MacDonald’s website states “the hearing is on Wednesday, November 16. All are welcomed to attend.”

The hearing is actually scheduled for November 15, 2016 at 9:00 A.M., at the Minnesota Judicial Center, Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board Courtroom.

According to the scheduling order, the disciplinary hearing is expected to last two days. A final determination on any disciplinary action against MacDonald will be announced in January.

The disciplinary hearing against MacDonald will be held one week after voters will decided if MacDonald should be elected to serve on the Minnesota Supreme Court. MacDonald is running against Justice Natalie Hudson.

In 2014, MacDonald was the Republican endorsed candidate for the Minnesota Supreme Court against Justice David Lillehaug. MacDonald lost to Lillehaug by just 7 points — 53 percent to 46 percent in November 2014.

This year, MacDonald was not endorsed by the Republican Party of Minnesota for the Minnesota Supreme Court after Republicans decided not to endorse judicial candidates.

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Sandra Grazzini-Rucki to file another harassment restraining order

Sandra Grazzini-Rucki intends on filing another fraudulent harassment restraining order against me when she is released from jail within the next two weeks, according to statements made by her attorney Michelle MacDonald to members of the media, and based on information communicated by MacDonald to my attorneys.

Last month, a Dakota County Deputy Sheriff served me with a harassment restraining order that was granted by Judge John McBride in Washington County at the request of Grazzini-Rucki.

Judge McBride later vacated and dismissed the same harassment restraining order.

The order was dismissed for procedural reasons; Grazzini-Rucki used the Stillwater office address of MacDonald to claim she was a resident of Washington County. Judge McBride agreed with the arguments made by my attorneys, Nathan Hansen and Ryan Griffin, that Grazzini-Rucki failed to file her request for a harassment restraining order in the proper county and therefore, Judge McBride vacated and dismissed the order.

Because the harassment restraining order was dismissed for procedural reason, Grazzini-Rucki has the option of filing the same fraudulent request for a harassment restraining order in another county in Minnesota when she is released from jail, which she intends to do.

While I am happy the harassment restraining order was vacated and dismissed, the court did not examine the allegations made by Grazzini-Rucki in her original request for the harassment order.

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