Runningshield pleads guilty in fatal stabbing, says he is dangerous


A Minneapolis man pleaded guilty to a murder during jury selection and agreed to a harsher sentence because of a previous murder, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Friday.


Frank Runningshield Jr., 43, pleaded guilty to unintentional second-degree murder in the stabbing death of 26-year-old Daquan Thompson of Minneapolis on Oct. 3. Runningshield will be sentenced Wednesday and is expected to receive just over 20 years in prison.


“This is an excellent outcome,” Freeman said. “Mr. Thompson’s family gets justice and the citizens of Hennepin County are protected from a man who has now killed twice. And Mr. Runningshield’s proposed defense of self-defense or defense of someone else from a three-week-old incident was not supported by the evidence.”


According to the criminal complaint and Runningshield’s admissions in court Wednesday, Runningshield believed that Thompson may have harassed or assaulted Runningshield’s wife and her relatives.


Three weeks later, shortly after 7 p.m. on Oct. 3 at the light rail station at 2310 Lake St., Runningshield saw Thompson. Runningshield admitted they had a discussion and then he stabbed Thompson once and fled. Video of the incident shows the discussion apparently ending on good terms when Runningshield made a quick stabbing motion and Thompson doubled over in pain.


Runningshield admitted that this was his third violent offense and that he was a danger to public safety. That allowed the sentence to be increased from between 153-216 months up to the 250 months he is expected to receive. His previous offenses were a third-degree assault in the late 1990s and a murder conviction from 2000.