Jail term for Minneapolis woman who ignited melee

  • Updated: April 4, 2013 - 11:27 PM

Chrishaun McDonald

A Minneapolis woman was sentenced Thursday to six months’ jail time and probation for her role in violently instigating a gender-bias melee that led to the stabbing death of her friend outside a bar.

Molly Flaherty, 41, received the sentence after pleading guilty Jan. 24 to third-degree assault for her role in the June 5, 2011, brawl outside the Schooner Tavern in Minneapolis that resulted in the death of Dean Schmitz, 47, and a manslaughter conviction for Chrishaun “CeCe” McDonald, 24, a man transitioning to a woman and who is serving time in the all-male St. Cloud prison.

The Washington County attorney’s office handled the case to avoid a conflict of interest for the Hennepin County attorney’s office, which handled McDonald’s prosecution.

According to charges, McDonald and a group of friends were walking along 29th Street shortly after midnight when a group of men and women outside the Tavern started yelling racial, homophobic and transgender slurs. The group that included McDonald crossed the street to confront the bar crowd.

Flaherty pushed a bar glass into McDonald’s face, leaving cuts that required 11 stitches.

Schmitz then pulled McDonald out of the fight, and McDonald stabbed him in the chest with scissors.

McDonald was charged with second-degree murder, but pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter. McDonald is serving a 3½-year sentence.

Flaherty was given credit for 135 days served in jail. She is expected to be released in May.

ABBY SIMONS

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