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State v. Friberg

Court of Appeals of Minnesota

September 3, 2013

State of Minnesota, Respondent,
v.
Forrest Eugene Friberg, Appellant.

UNPUBLISHED OPINION

Anoka County District Court File No. 02-CR-11-3335

Lori Swanson, Attorney General, St. Paul, Minnesota; and Anthony C. Palumbo, Anoka County Attorney, Lisa B. Jones, Special Assistant County Attorney, Anoka, Minnesota (for respondent)

Christopher P. Renz, Nathan J. Knoernschild, Thomsen & Nybeck, P.A., Bloomington, Minnesota (for appellant)

Considered and decided by Larkin, Presiding Judge; Halbrooks, Judge; and Worke, Judge.

WORKE, Judge

Appellant argues that the district court abused its discretion by revoking his probation and executing a stayed 172-month sentence for a first-degree criminal sexual conduct conviction. We affirm.

FACTS

In 2011, appellant Forrest Eugene Friberg was charged with one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and one count of second-degree criminal sexual conduct for sexually assaulting a child. Appellant pleaded guilty to the first-degree offense, and at sentencing the district court imposed the 172-month[1] presumptive sentence, but granted a downward-dispositional-departure by staying the executed sentence and placing appellant on probation for 20 years, with conditions, including a 365-day jail term. Other conditions of probation required appellant to remain law abiding, obey rules of probation, participate in sex-offender treatment and aftercare, have no contact with minors until approved, and participate in mental-health programming as directed.

On April 25, 2012, just over a month after sentencing, appellant absconded from the Anoka County workhouse after being released to attend sex-offender treatment. Appellant drove to Madison, Wisconsin, intending to commit suicide there, but then returned to Minnesota and on April 30 jumped off a parking ramp, causing severe physical injuries to himself that required months of hospitalization.[2] The district court ordered a psychological evaluation; appellant was diagnosed with depressive disorder and Asperger's disorder, but was found competent to participate in legal proceedings.

Appellant was alleged to have violated probation in two respects: (1) he did not serve 365 days in jail and (2) he failed to complete sex-offender treatment and aftercare. At his probation-revocation hearing, appellant admitted that he violated his probation by leaving the workhouse and that he did not attend sex-offender treatment, as required. The state asked for execution of appellant's sentence because his conduct caused a new trauma to the victim and the victim's family, who were already concerned about appellant's obsession with the child and had opposed the probationary sentence, and because incarceration was necessary to protect public safety and to provide appellant with mental-health treatment. Appellant's attorney argued at the hearing that appellant's conduct was prompted by mental illness, that he was not trying to be a "burden to anybody, " and that he needs treatment rather than incarceration.

The district court revoked appellant's probation and executed his sentence based on the seriousness of the original offense and appellant's refusal to follow the probation order. The district court summed up its ruling by stating,

I'm finding that based on everything that I've heard this afternoon and your own admissions that you're in need of correctional treatment and sex offender treatment that can only be effectively provided if you are confined. You've done well in the jail. The workhouse you decided to leave after one day. Everything I've read here indicates that you do well in structured environments. And you cannot be safely supervised in any kind of inpatient sex offender treatment. . . . And finally, it would unduly depreciate the seriousness of this violation if probation were not revoked.

This appeal followed. During its pendency, the parties moved to strike or supplement portions of the materials in the appellate ...


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