A 44-year-old man with a violent criminal history was charged Tuesday with shooting a woman in St. Paul and implicated in gunfire several hours earlier in Minneapolis.
Antoine L. Powell, 44, was charged in Ramsey County District Court with second-degree intentional murder in connection with the shooting on Sept. 3 that killed Anna Marie Wagener, 41, of St. Paul, and severely wounded another woman.
Powell, of St. Paul, is currently in the Hennepin County jail on a weapons-related charge filed in October 2019.
Neither police nor prosecutors have offered a motive for the shooting. Investigators said at the time that they believed that the suspect and victim knew each other.
According to the complaint:
Police officers arrived at Arcade Street and E. Cook Avenue shortly before 3:40 a.m. and saw Wagener with gunshot wounds to her chest and leg. She died at the scene. An autopsy found that she had been shot six times.
The officers learned that missing were her cellphone and her handgun. She had recently obtained a government-issued permit to carry a firearm and the gun “because the area where she lived wasn’t safe,” the charging document read.
A resident nearby told police about seeing the gunman shoot Wagener as she moved backward from him. The shooter then grabbed something from Wagener and ran.
Surveillance video from the area showed Wagener pull out a handgun from her waistband, then walk out of view. Police squads arrived 10 minutes later.
Ammunition casings police collected at the scene had similar characteristics to casings recovered about seven hours earlier in Minneapolis in the 2400 block of N. Emerson Avenue. That gunfire occurred at a memorial for someone who was shot a week earlier.
A confidential informant came to St. Paul police and, according to the complaint, made some key connections: Someone the informant knew as Antoine or Shantoine shot Wagener, then took her gun; the man was involved in the north Minneapolis shooting the night before; and the man had been wearing a state Department of Corrections (DOC) ankle monitor but cut it off.
DOC data provided by the ankle bracelet placed Powell at the scene of Wagener’s death and at the earlier shooting on Emerson Avenue.
Powell spoke with homicide investigators Monday from the Hennepin County jail. He was shown some of the evidence in Wagener’s death and did not respond, other than to say he needed a lawyer.
Powell was on probation at the time of the shootings in early September for a weapons offense in 2014 out of Hennepin County. Court records also show that he has three convictions in Minnesota for drugs, three for bringing drugs or alcohol into jail, and one each for assault and credit card fraud.