Minneapolis Landlord Stephen Frenz Sentenced for Perjury
Minneapolis landlord Stephen Frenz was sentenced to 60 days in jail and up to three years of probation for committing perjury, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Friday.
Frenz, 56, was found guilty of perjury by a Hennepin County District Court jury on Oct. 18, after less than five hours of deliberation. In addition to jail time and probation, Frenz must also perform 200 hours of community service and pay a $1,000 fine. His jail time will be staggered, with the first 30 days being served in Jan. 2020, and the remaining 30 days to be served in Jan. 2021.
Frenz’s conviction centered on his actions that took place in 2016 at one of his properties: a 17-unit apartment building at 3057 14th Ave. S. A Minneapolis neighborhood organization, IX of Powderhorn Park filed a tenants’ remedies action in Hennepin County District Court against Frenz and two of his companies.
The organization could only bring the court action with the written permission of a majority of the tenants in occupied units. Frenz later filed a motion with the judge for summary judgment and included his sworn affidavit stating that three additional units were occupied at the time of the court filing and, therefore, IX of Powderhorn Park did not have a majority of the tenants.
However, an investigation found that Frenz was lying about those three units being occupied, meaning his sworn affidavit was perjury. The evidence introduced in court included the pest control worker who had sprayed the three apartments and noted on the invoice that they were vacant. He testified Frenz asked him to submit a new invoice for the three units and not include the word vacant.