Marcus Fischer unexpectedly made his first appearance in court on Friday afternoon, nearly two weeks after he was shot by Minneapolis police officers when he brought a knife into an interview room and started stabbing himself.
Fischer, 18, appeared in a courtroom at the Hennepin County jail, standing behind a glass partition in a jail-issued orange jumpsuit, his right arm heavily bandaged.
His answers were brief when he was asked by Judge Gina Brandt about how he was feeling and whether he had any questions for her. The hearing took just a few minutes.
Fischer was discharged from Hennepin County Medical Center this week, where he was treated for injuries — both self-inflicted and when police shot him. Two previous court dates had to be rescheduled because he was still undergoing medical treatment.
After his hearing Friday, Fischer turned and blew a kiss to family members and supporters, who for the third time since last week crammed the front two rows in the courtroom gallery. Several people, including his father, Eric, quietly sobbed as the teenager was led away.
Brandt set a bail hearing for Jan. 3, a date that prosecutors earlier this week had circled as his first court appearance. His case didn’t appear on the docket until Friday morning.
In the meantime, he is being held in the county jail, in lieu of $200,000 bail, on charges of first-degree assault, first-degree robbery and possession of a handgun by a prohibited person.
The senior at Menlo Park Academy was brought in Dec. 18 for questioning about his involvement in a robbery and shooting in northeast Minneapolis. Detectives left him unattended at one point during the interview, and when they returned, authorities say he was stabbing himself with a “large” folding knife that he had brought into the room in his waistband.
Officers tried to negotiate with Fischer, unsuccessfully using a Taser to subdue him, then opened fire when he ignored orders to put the weapon down and started moving toward the door.
The two officers who fired their guns — Sgt. Gene Suker and officer Jerome Carey — are on paid administrative leave pending an investigation by the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. State investigators will turn their findings over to prosecutors from Washington County, which is handling the case because of a conflict of interest.
The conflict arose from the fact that the Hennepin County attorney’s office has charged Fischer in the robbery case and also employs the father of officer David Martinson, who deployed the Taser.
Fischer’s co-defendant in the robbery case, Blaine Archambault, 35, is also being held at the jail. He is charged with aiding an offender and illegally possessing a firearm.
Attempts to reach attorneys representing the two defendants were unsuccessful on Friday afternoon.