Hennepin County

Cases

Civil

Legal counsel for Hennepin County

Civil

The Hennepin County Attorney's Office provides full service legal counsel to the Hennepin County government. Attorneys represent the county board, county departments and taxpayer interests. Learn how the office represents your interests.

If you are seeking information from the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office under the Minnesota Data Practices Act, please follow the instructions listed under "data practice requests" that are part of Hennepin County's open government policies. 

Please be aware that much of the data generated by the office is considered confidential data or is otherwise exempt from the data practices act.

Adult Felonies

Information

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In Minnesota, basic information about court cases is public information with specific exceptions for juvenile court records.

The Hennepin County Attorney's Office does its best to proactively provide updates to the community, focusing on cases that are high profile or have generated public interest. The office handles nearly 9,000 cases each year. Due to this volume, only a fraction of the cases are listed on this website as either a press release or as part of the neighborhood crime map.

There are a number of additional ways to access court records in Hennepin County:

Find out more about available case information.

Impact statements are an opportunity for anyone who has been negatively affected by crime to make sure their voice is heard. These statements are submitted to the court and taken into account by the judge. They may affect bail, conditions for release, probation, or sentencing.

Impact statements

Find hearing times and locations on the schedule for the fourth district court. 

This schedule includes adult felony and some family court cases and is posted at 8:30 a.m. You can also call 612-348-2040. 

Check the district court schedule.

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Victim Services provides advocacy, support and referrals for victims of crime as their cases move through the criminal justice process.

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Criminal prosecution

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office prosecutes all adult felony cases and all juvenile offenses. Different teams of attorneys, victim advocates and legal support staff with appropriate expertise prosecute different kinds of cases.

A felony is an offense that has a sentence of at least one year and one day in state prison. Adult felony cases are assigned based on the type of crime and the background of the offender. For example the Gang Unit prosecutes all offenses by known gang members. Learn more about the types of felony crimes we prosecute and which trial team would handle the case.

The Juvenile Prosecution Division handles all offenses committed by someone under 18.

For information about adult, non-felony cases please consult the appropriate city attorney.

Criminal justice process

The criminal justice process is complex. These overviews are intended to help community members understand the system, the role of different agencies and how a court case may progress. They are not legal advice and do not cover every possible circumstance.

Criminal justice process – provides an overview of the steps in the adult criminal justice system and the role of different agencies

Legal process overview – addresses many frequently asked questions

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In 2023, the Minnesota Legislature passed a law allowing prosecutors to ask a judge to adjust the sentences of past criminal prosecutions. This law, referred to as Prosecutor-Initiated Sentence Adjustment (“PISA”) is in Minnesota Statute Section 609.133. Prosecutors are not permitted to seek a longer sentence under this law.

 

Background Information on the Law

Under the PISA law in Minnesota, prosecutors may review past cases and file a petition to ask a judge to adjust an individual’s sentence. If the court determines that there are “substantial and compelling reasons to adjust the individual’s sentence,” the judge can modify it, with three exceptions.

The court cannot:

  • increase someone’s sentence
  • reduce or eliminate restitution
  • reduce or eliminate conditional release if required by law after someone has served time in prison

 

When the court reviews a petition, it must consider the following factors:

  • the impact a sentence adjustment would have on public safety
  • how an adjustment would promote the rehabilitation of the individual
  • whether an adjustment would properly reflect the severity of the underlying offense or reduce sentencing disparities
  • statements by a victim about the harm suffered and the potential sentence adjustment

 

Victim Input

Victims’ voices will play an important part in this process. Two victims’ rights groups, Violence Free Minnesota, a coalition to end relationship abuse, and MNCASA, the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault, supported the passage of the PISA law.

Under the law, prosecutors and the court must consider the impact a sentence adjustment would have on victims. Victims or a victim’s family have the right to provide input and make a statement to the court about a possible sentence adjustment. The HCAO will notify the victim or victim’s family when it has decided to move forward with a case and assign a victim-witness staff member to guide the victim or family through the process.

 

PISA in Hennepin County

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office has been actively identifying types of cases to prioritize for potential sentence adjustments. Eligible individuals will receive an invitation from our office to apply for PISA.

As of February 7, 2024, the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office is also accepting applications for PISA from incarcerated individuals serving Hennepin County convictions. To ensure our office is effectively using PISA, we must prioritize certain applications. The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office is currently prioritizing individuals who:

  • are currently incarcerated,
  • are not scheduled for release until at least 2027,
  • have served more than 3 years in prison, and
  • do not have any open cases

There are over 2,000 individuals serving Hennepin County convictions in DOC custody. If you do not currently fit the above criteria, we will not be moving forward with your case at this time. We will, however, respond to your application and invite you to apply when you meet the above criteria. (Please note: criteria is subject to change, and we will update both our website and the application to ensure we are communicating the current criteria with potential applicants).

You can download the application here.

The application should only be completed by the incarcerated person or their counsel. The incarcerated person does not need counsel in order to submit an application, and they will not “skip the line” by having counsel.

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office is working with lawyers at the University of St. Thomas School of Law (UST Law) to review and process applications for Prosecutor Initiated Sentence Adjustment. Please note that by submitting an application for PISA, the applicant is allowing the HCAO to share information related to the case with UST Law.  

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Youth

Justice System

Juvenile proceeding

Youth Prosecution

In Minnesota, all offenses committed by someone under 18 are handled by County Attorneys. These range from traffic incidents to homicides. 

The Hennepin County Attorney's Youth Prosecution Division is responsible for these cases.  

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victim advocate

Victim Services

Advocates provide services and support to victims in these crimes and help them navigate the juvenile court system.

The office also provides significant diversion, intervention and services for juvenile offenders with the goal of returning the youth to law-abiding behavior.

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Cases in the news

Stories about the office

Cases in the news

Many of our cases receive media attention. Browse recent press releases, court updates and criminal complaints.

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