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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Suspect in stabbing at St. Paul Cub Foods wanted to go to jail, police say

Please click onto the COMMENTS for the story.


Anonymous Pioneer Press said...

Man says he's homeless, was guilty of 2 other recent crimes
By Mara H. Gottfried
Updated: 01/28/2010 12:16:46 AM CST

A 25-year-old man who stabbed a St. Paul Cub Foods employee Monday told police he didn't know the victim, but picked him because "he didn't want to stab a lady" and wanted to go to jail, according to a criminal complaint filed Wednesday.

The Ramsey County attorney's office charged Raymond Andrew Berg, of St. Paul, with second-degree assault.

Five days before the stabbing, Berg had pleaded guilty to felony criminal damage to property. In the Dec. 5 case at the Wal-Mart on St. Paul's University Avenue, Berg smashed televisions and later told police "he had no place to stay, and he knew that this action would get him put in jail," the complaint said. He told police he was on medications for schizophrenia, the complaint said.

After Monday's stabbing, in which the 35-year-old victim reportedly suffered a punctured lung and was expected to recover, Berg told police he waited for officers to arrive "because he figured it was time to go to jail," the new complaint said.

"Berg said he thought about stabbing someone in the heart but didn't want to do that, stating that if he was going to do anything, he was just going to hurt someone," the complaint said. "Berg asked what would happen with him and when told he would go to jail or that he would have to do jail time, Berg said, 'Yeah, I would hope so. I mean, that's what I would do it for. I mean, I really wouldn't like to go back out on the street again.' "

Berg remains in custody. Bail was set Wednesday at $50,000, but a judge ordered him evaluated for mental deficiency/illness and competency to proceed.
The same evaluation was ordered Dec. 8 in the Wal-Mart case. Berg was found competent Dec. 22 and released from jail that day with conditions, including that he take prescribed medications, complete and comply with a chemical health assessment, have weekly contact with a Project Remand counselor and remain law-abiding, according to a court order.

Two days later, Berg allegedly went to the lobby of the Ramsey County Jail and exposed himself to jail staff and people in the waiting area, according to a citation for misdemeanor indecent exposure. He was jailed and released Dec. 26.

On Jan. 20, Berg pleaded guilty to the damage at Wal-Mart. His conditional release was continued, and sentencing was scheduled for Feb. 25.

The Ramsey County attorney's office was not aware of the indecent exposure misdemeanor when Berg was in court last week, said Paul Gustafson, a spokesman for the office.

Project Remand, a nonprofit organization that contracts with the county to oversee conditional release, is "responsible for monitoring and bringing to the attention of the courts" when there is a violation of a conditional release, Gustafson said. "This is not something that was brought to our attention."

Mary Pat Maher, Project Remand executive director, did not return calls seeking comment.

The new complaint against Berg gives the following account:

Police and paramedics were called to Cub Foods in the Sun Ray Shopping Center, 2197 Old Hudson Road, about 10:45 a.m. Monday. The victim, a cashier who was being trained, was brought to Regions Hospital in St. Paul.

10:06 AM  
Anonymous story continued said...

Numerous co-workers saw a man, later identified as Berg, walk up to the victim and stab him in the upper right chest. The victim yelled that he had been stabbed. Berg then walked away and paced near the exit doors, holding the knife overhead, and appeared "to be in a daze," witnesses told police.

When police talked to the victim later, he said a man he didn't know had come into his line at the register without groceries. He said his attacker had not said anything before stabbing him.

Officers arriving at the store had been told the suspect had a large knife in a plastic bag. An officer saw Berg with a plastic bag in his right hand. When Berg saw the officer, he walked farther into the store and put the bag in a trash can. Then, Berg put both hands to his head, walked out of the store toward police and was arrested.

Police found a small knife in Berg's jacket pocket. In the trash can, the plastic bag held a bloody knife with a 7- to 8-inch blade.

Police interviewed Berg at the Ramsey County Jail. He said "he was messed up in the head and cannot support himself, so he went to Cub Foods with a knife and stabbed this guy," the complaint said.

Berg said he had thought about going to Target but took a taxi to Sun Ray, bought a knife at a thrift store there and went to Cub to stab someone.

"(A)t the cash register, there were two or three ladies and a guy, and he didn't want to stab a lady, so he stabbed the guy who he did not know," the complaint said of what Berg told police. "Berg said he couldn't believe how far the knife went in."

Berg told police he "was under a doctor's care but didn't have any mental health medication with him," the complaint continued. He said he knows "right from wrong but also understands that he is in a situation where he can't afford anything and just wanted out."

Mara Gottfried can be reached at 651-228-5262.

10:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is like the third time this guy commits a crime saying he wants to go to jail because he has no place to live.

This is the insanity of taking away the safety net of the state hospital system for the mentally ill.

Some people would be better off hospitalized.


Chuck Repke

10:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No Chuck,

He wanted to go to jail because he had to live in St. Paul.

The insanity of the city inspection program drove him to it. The inspectors need people with safety butterfly nets going after them.

6:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"This is the insanity of taking away the safety net of the state hospital system for the mentally ill"

Or perhaps it's the insanity of a city who condemns houses in order to address behavior issues by demanding illegal code compliances on houses with minor violations.

2:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

6:59 - 2:24 Cute, but he has no money, no resources, the issue isn't how much he can pay the issue is that he is mentally ill and can't care for himself and we have a state policy that refuses to hospitalize people in this condition. It is suppose to be liberating for the mentally ill to let them run amock.

I don't get it. I think there should places for him, and Bill.


Chuck Repke

8:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Senator Kennedy said about our mental health system, "It is a national disgrace when we know what to do and we don't do it."

Sounds like bureaucrat mentality to me.

4:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Repke, that's your bureaucrat mentality, not Senator Kennedy's.

With all the research, why don't you advocate getting the mental health system up-to-date?

It'd save lots of money, but put bureaucrats out of work.

6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like this project remand is a joke. More wasteful spending .

5:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somehow I don't think Chuck is the one to get the deadwood out of the mental institution profession.

I think some of Chuck's and Eric's arguments would only work on people who have had lobotomies.

7:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chuck said " We have a state policy that refuses to hospitalize people in tis condition " .

Well for many decades and perhalps even so today, Anoka State Hospital was abusing youth and persons commited for simple offences and being under the influences of drugs and alchohol. ie. pot.

Chuck it's the simple policy of this state to only do what financially benefits the state cofers.

But, this project remand is a joke and a lawsuit should be filed for the failure of this government funded agency to report to the courts, of this attempted murderers past and recent alleged criminal behavior that would have permitted the courts to deny bail to this clown earlier.

It's just a failed system Chuck so get used to it.

12:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see Chuck is trying to shut Bill up by saying he should be locked up.
Bill is a whistle blower on RAP, Norm Coleman, the City, Don Luna, The Bridges Project, follow the money and catch the crooks and maybe you'll come up with Jimmy Hoffa Sr.

Your Truely
Bill Dahn

4:42 PM  

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