No felony charges for stolen RNC plan

  • Updated: September 11, 2008 - 11:21 PM

No felony charges will be filed against a former FedEx/Kinko's employee suspected of purloining copies of police training documents that later showed up on an anarchist group's website, authorities said Thursday.

According to a search warrant affidavit, the 31-year-old St. Paul man worked on a printing job ordered July 28 by Defense Technology, a company based in Wyoming that came to St. Paul to help train police for the Republican National Convention.

The document copies were intended "for law enforcement use only," but at least one later showed up on the website of the RNC Welcoming Committee, a group whose goal was to crash the convention.

A nine-page manual titled "Saint Paul Police Department's SIU Policy and Guidelines for Investigations and Information Gathering Operations Involving First Amendment Activity" is still on the group's site.

St. Paul police aren't too worried about the release of that document, said spokesman Tom Walsh. But others also may have been leaked, he said.

"Were people bent on criminal activity able to learn anything that would aid them in moving that criminal activity forward?" Walsh asked. "I don't believe that they were."

The St. Paul man named in the affidavit filed in Ramsey County District Court told investigators that he "did forward this document to another person but that he was drinking at the time."

Paul Gustafson, a spokesman for the county attorney's office, said police presented a case to prosecutors but charging attorneys were not able to find any applicable statute. The case was forwarded to the St. Paul city attorney's office for possible misdemeanor charges, Gustafson said.

PAT PHEIFER

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