Lake Superior school district superintendent on two years probationLake Superior school district Superintendent Phil Minkkinen has been sentenced to two years of probation in Lake County District Court for an Aug. 14 incident in which he violated a protection order for his now ex-wife.
Lake Superior school district Superintendent Phil Minkkinen has been sentenced to two years of probation in Lake County District Court for an Aug. 14 incident in which he violated a protection order for his now ex-wife.
Minkkinen, who pleaded guilty Oct. 31, was sentenced last week for the misdemeanor violation.
As part of the two-year term of supervised probation imposed Nov. 21 by Judge Michael Cuzzo, Minkkinen must report to a probation officer once a month. Cuzzo also ordered him to undergo a chemical dependency evaluation and treatment, if recommended, and psychological counseling. Minkkinen must have no similar violations and have no contact with his victim, ex-wife Molly Minkkinen, except as outlined in their family file. Minkinnen also has to pay $385 in fines and fees.
The court case stems from an Aug. 14 incident in which Minkkinen was arrested by a Lake County sheriff’s deputy in the parking lot of the Two Harbors Super One grocery store.
A report filed by the deputy who arrested Minkkinen said the superintendent had used his phone to text his wife about picking up some property he was moving out of one of their homes. The protection order specifically states that that there is to be no contact of any kind with his wife unless arranged through law enforcement officers.
Molly Minkkinen, who was in Two Harbors that Sunday in August to drop off the couple’s daughter in a custody exchange, called police about 4 p.m. after she received the text.
The deputy who filed the arrest report met with Molly Minkkinen and then went to the lot where Phil Minkkinen was waiting for his daughter. The deputy told Minkkinen about the violation and that he would be arrested. Minkkinen repeatedly asked why he was being arrested, the deputy reported. He was booked in Lake County Jail; a day later he posted bail and was released.
Later that week in August, he was sentenced in Duluth on a petty misdemeanor charge of damage to property regarding an incident earlier this year in which he damaged his wife’s car at her work place in Duluth. The damage was estimated to be about $226, which was included as restitution in the $411 in fees Minkkinen was ordered to pay the court.
Police in Duluth investigating that incident in May said Minkkinen at first denied doing anything to his wife’s car, but later admitted to breaking her taillight while facing video evidence showing he was in the parking lot that day.