Hodge guilty of assaulting store manager with hammer


The Minneapolis man who severely beat a store employee with a hammer pleaded guilty to first-degree assault and was immediately sentenced to nine years in prison, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Tuesday.

The guilty plea and sentence occurred Aug. 1. In exchange for Andrew Hodge, 26, pleading guilty and agreeing to the 110 months in prison, a burglary and an aggravated robbery charge were dismissed. Restitution will be determined later.

In the court hearing, Hodge admitted that about 6:10 a.m. Dec. 31, he broke into a small grocery store in the 3700 block of Portland Avenue South. That activated a burglar alarm and police were sent. The store manager also was contacted and he arrived before police.

He found the front door damaged and when he went inside he was confronted by Hodge, who was stealing items. Hodge admitted that he used a hammer to beat the manager in the face area and only stopped when police arrived and Hodge tried to flee. After a short pursuit, Hodge was captured.

The attack resulted in the manager suffering some brain damage and a loss of his senses of taste and smell. He also underwent several eye surgeries, according to the court testimony.