UPDATE (12:00 PM, Thursday, March 19, 2020) – Dede Evavold’s pre-trial hearing for March 23, 2020, had been canceled because of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Minnesota Judicial Branch has adjusted court hearings for the next 30 days. Evavold’s criminal trial is still scheduled for April 20, 2020
Dede Evavold failed to attend an evidentiary hearing this morning for her upcoming criminal trial on violating a Harassment Restraining Order (HRO) filed against her by Michael Brodkorb. Evavold was charged in May after she attempted to contact Brodkorb for assistance in restarting her blog after WordPress suspended it for violating their terms of service.
Today’s hearing was scheduled for 9:00 AM this morning at the Dakota County Northern Service Center in West St. Paul, Minnesota, and was requested by Evavold during a pre-trial hearing last December. The hearing was published on the public court calendar for Dakota County and it was listed on Minnesota State Court Information System.
Judge Vicki Taylor waited until 9:37 AM to allow Evavold to appear in the courtroom before the hearing was canceled.
Because Evavold was a no-show for today’s hearing, there will now be a pre-trial hearing scheduled for March 23, 2020 – which was the date of Evavold’s criminal trial. The trial date has now been moved to April 20, 2020.
Judge Taylor left open the possibility of sanctioning Evavold for the costs associated with today’s hearing. Law enforcement was subpoenaed to testify and others were present in the courtroom waiting for Evavold to arrive for today’s hearing.
Court grants 50-year restraining order against Dede Evavold
In September 2019, a judge in Dakota County granted a 50-year extension on the Harassment Restraining Order (HRO) requested by David Rucki and his daughter, Samantha Rucki, against Dede Evavold.
The HRO against Evavold remains in effect until September 9, 2069.
Evavold was convicted in September 2016 of six felonies for her role in the disappearance of Samantha Rucki and her sister Gianna, who were abducted near their home in Lakeville, Minnesota by their mother Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, during a custody and divorce proceeding.
After being released from jail, Evavold repeatedly violated the explicit terms of her probation and the HRO by continuing to reference the Rucki family in her use of social media. Evavold’s blog posted pictures of the Rucki family, their home in Lakeville, and the address to the home, in violation of the HRO and the conditions of her probation.
On July 28, 2017, a court in Dakota County has found that “an immediate and present danger of harassment” by Evavold exists to warrant the granting of a Harassment Restraining Order (HRO) requested by David Rucki and his daughter, Samantha Rucki, against Evavold.
In March 2018, a warrant was issued today for the arrest of Evavold after she ignored a previous court order which ordered Evavold to “remove ALL blogs/postings, social media postings, or internet postings” about David Rucki, his children, and other members of the Rucki family which violated the HRO.
Evavold was arrested days later while hiding inside her home. She was later released from jail to remove the remaining online material which violates the HRO.
In July 2018, a judge in Dakota County has upheld the Harassment Restraining Order requested by David Rucki and his daughter, Samantha Rucki, against Dede Evavold, describing Evavold’s threatening behavior toward the Rucki family as “evil.”
“In the 34+ years the undersigned has served as a District or Senior Judge, never have I seen a case that represents harassment most evil,” wrote Judge Philip Kanning in his order released yesterday. “The Respondent’s actions have been intended to terrify, threaten and invade the privacy of the Petitioner and his minor children,” adding Judge Kanning. Evavold appealed the order from Judge Kanning last July.
The Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed Judge Kanning’s order in July 2019, determining “that the HRO restrains unprotected speech.”
The harassment by Evavold and others is detailed in the award-winning true crime book The Girls Are Gone, which was written by Brodkorb and Allison Mann.