Andrew Joseph Dikken has petitioned to enter a plea guilty on two counts of second-degree murder, according to a motion filed at the Yellow Medicine County Courthouse on Wednesday, October 16.
Andrew Joseph Dikken has petitioned to enter a plea guilty on two counts of second-degree murder, according to a motion filed at the Yellow Medicine County Courthouse on Wednesday, October 16. Dikken, 28, of Renville, is charged with two counts of second-degree murder for the September 2 shootings of Kara Monson, 26, of Granite Falls, and Chris Panitzke, 28, of Redwood Falls. Each second-degree murder count carries a maximum possible sentence of up to 40 years in prison. According to a complaint report, Panitzke told police officers that Dikken gained entry to the Monson household, turned on a light and opened fire on the pair as they lay sleeping. Monson died at the scene while Panitzke passed several days later on September 8. Dikken remains in custody at the Yellow Medicine County Jail where he is being held on $3 million bail. According to the petition, the minimum jail sentence that the court must impose on Dikken is 632 months or 52-and-a-half years imprisonment. The sentence, as per judicial protocol, must be served consecutively, 306 months on the first conviction and 326 on the second. Dikken would have to spend a minimum of 35 years behind bars, even if he were able to reduce his prison time by one-third through good behavior, according to the West Central Tribune. As a result, not until the age of 63 would Dikken be eligible for release under a supervised probation program. The petition also states that the prosecution is unwilling to discuss a reduced sentence in exchange for Dikken’s guilty plea. There has also been no indication as to whether the prosecution will seek to convene a grand jury, which would be required to bring about first-degree murder indictment and subsequent life sentence. A plea hearing has been scheduled for Wednesday, October 30 at 8:15 a.m. at the Yellow Medicine County Courthouse.