The Minneapolis woman killed on New Year’s Eve was apparently abducted before she was found shot several times in an alley with duct tape wrapped around one of her wrists, according to court documents.
Two search warrant affidavits filed Friday alleged that Monique Baugh, a 28-year-old Realtor, was kidnapped from a Maple Grove home she was showing by someone driving a U-Haul rental truck. They raised doubts about the identity and motive of the person who contacted Baugh to arrange the showing, and tied her killing to an alleged drug rivalry between the suspect and Baugh’s boyfriend, who was also shot on New Year’s Eve but survived.
Court and jail records show that a 41-year-old man was booked into the Hennepin County jail at 1:12 a.m. Friday in connection with Baugh’s death. The suspect was booked on probable cause murder but has not been criminally charged. The Star Tribune generally does not name suspects before they’ve been charged.
“This murder here was particularly brutal,” longtime activist Al Flowers said at an emotional news conference earlier in the day. “Some people said the violence would stop during the wintertime. It didn’t stop. We’re still dying. Our kids are still dying.”
Court records filed in Baugh’s killing reveal that the suspect U-Haul was spotted in Maple Grove and then later in the alley behind a home in north Minneapolis where Baugh’s boyfriend was shot.
The documents said the alleged driver of the U-Haul was a drug dealer who is a “rival” to Baugh’s boyfriend. They did not specify the nature of the alleged rivalry.
Police responded about 5:40 p.m. to a shooting the 4800 block of Humboldt Ave. N. and found Baugh’s boyfriend shot and wounded inside, the documents said.
Emergency dispatch audio showed that the call involved a 29-year-old male victim in an upstairs bedroom with multiple gunshot wounds, including one to the chest.
“Caller advised that bullet came through the front window, unknown vehicle description,” according to the audio. “There are children in the house.”
The home that was targeted is the same as an address listed in public records for Baugh. Sources said her boyfriend remains hospitalized with serious injuries. The couple’s two young daughters, both under age 5, were uninjured.
According to the affidavits: Police responded to a second shooting in the 1300 block of Russell Avenue North about 6:38 p.m. and found Baugh on the ground in an alley with several gunshot wounds. She was taken to North Memorial Health Hospital where she later died.
A witness told police he saw a U-Haul driving north in the alley away from where Baugh was found.
Police found surveillance footage across the street from the Maple Grove home Baugh was showing. It showed her pulling up to the house, a U-Haul passing the house and someone walking into the home, the affidavits said.
The U-Haul then pulled up to the house, repositioned and backed up to the garage doors.
“It is believed that the video shows the female victim being escorted into the back of the U-Haul where it then drives away,” the affidavits said. “It has been learned that the person who scheduled the showing with the female victim reached out to her ‘directly’ and not through the realty firm.”
Baugh worked as an agent for Kris Lindahl Real Estate.
Police searched the suspect U-Haul after it was returned to the company and found zip ties and Gorilla Tape inside, the affidavits said.
A woman told police she rented the U-Haul for her drug dealer. The woman and her fiancé identified the man by name and photo, according to the documents.
Baugh’s death galvanized residents fed up with a spate of gun violence in both Minneapolis and St. Paul. Black representatives from nine Twin Cities community-based organizations of the Safe Streets Coalition gathered outside Mayor Jacob Frey’s office Friday morning to denounce the rash of shootings.
“We are sick and tired of our people lying dead in the street like animals,” said Alicia Smith, lead organizer of Safe Streets Minneapolis. “We are no longer turning a blind eye to what’s happening in our community.”
Black leaders vowed to work with local law enforcement to identify people harboring weapons and encouraged others to speak up when they have information that could help solve a violent crime.
“We’ve sat back for years and blamed somebody else,” said Miki Frost, founder of the 8218/Truce Center in St. Paul, an organization working to de-escalate youth disputes. “We need to start checking ourselves.”
Lisa Clemons, a North Sider and former city police officer, called on her neighbors to address the issue by name.
“If we’re ashamed to say that black-on-black violence is a problem in this country, in this city, in this state, we can’t solve that problem,” said Clemons, whose group, A Mother’s Love, regularly responds to crime scenes to defuse tense situations. “We are ready to fight this.”
Meanwhile, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey assured residents that the city would not tolerate violence of any kind — regardless of the neighborhood. “The North Side should not get the short end of the stick,” he said.
Earlier Friday, Minneapolis and St. Paul police announced arrests and charges in unrelated killings just hours into the new year.
Kevin J. Christians, 38, of Coon Rapids, turned himself into police Thursday night for the Jan. 1 fatal stabbing of Jabir Ahmed Ali. He was charged Friday with one count of second-degree murder without intent.
Christians stabbed Ali, a 25-year-old from Faribault, Minn., in the thigh at an after-hours party in the 1100 block of W. Broadway Avenue, said the charges, which did not specify a motive. Christians also stabbed a second man who survived.
In St. Paul, Trayvon T. Anderson was charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Carl Dobbs Jr., who was found mortally wounded at 2 a.m. in a car outside Johnny Baby’s bar in the 900 block of W. University Avenue. Dobbs’ family created an online fundraiser for funeral expenses.
Community leaders advocated for more state and local funding to fight gun violence, as well as more involvement from corporate and philanthropic groups.
“Close your eyes and imagine if what happened to Monique happened to an Edina housewife — a white lady,” said Steven Belton, president of the Twin Cities Urban League.“… I have to wonder, what does it take to create outrage in the broader community?”