Hennepin County Boasts Minnesota’s Lowest Acquittal Rate


KSTP investigated Minnesota’s justice system using data from the court system from 2006-2011.

They found that the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office has the lowest acquittal rate in the state. Additionally, Hennepin County has a higher caseload and more cases that go to trial.

The low acquittal rate is a testament to the excellence and hard work of prosecutors, advocates, paralegals, and support staff at the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office.  County Attorney Mike Freeman praised his staff in an interview with KSTP, “We also have, without a question, the best trial lawyers of any law office in the state.”

The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office aggressively prosecutes dangerous offenders by applying new statutes, cutting edge techniques and old-fashioned perseverance. Here are some notable convictions from the last 18 months:

  • Joe Gustafson Sr, a mob boss who terrorized North Minneapolis, was found guilty of racketeering and will be sentenced March 1st.
  • Christopher Tate, a repeat sex offender, was sentenced to life, with the possibility parole, under a new statute that allows for enhanced sentencing for the most dangerous sexual predators. Hennepin County was the first to prosecute a case using the enhanced statute and proactively screens cases to see if they apply.
  • Daniel James Rick was convicted of knowingly transferring a communicable disease, which had never been tried before.
  • Enzo mortgage case involved four defendants and $7 million in fraudulent loans, each was found guilty and sentenced.