Authorities on Tuesday arrested a man who is accused of fatally shooting a woman in Isanti County after they were at two bars that day and then burying her body on farmland behind his home.
The 37-year-old suspect remains jailed on suspicion of murder in the death early this month of 32-year-old Amanda Jo Vangrinsven, who worked at one of the bars where she and the suspect got together, according to court documents.
The man, who had been in a psychiatric treatment facility in recent days, has yet to be charged. The Star Tribune generally does not identify suspects before they are charged.
"This investigation into this case has been moved forward due to the hard work of many different agencies and community groups," read a joint statement from Sheriff Chris Caulk and Isanti Police Chief Travis Muyres. "We are incredibly thankful to them for their dedication, commitment and compassion."
While the sheriff and chief declined to say more about the killing, search warrant affidavits filed in the case Monday revealed many details from the day about how Vangrinsven and the suspect met up and the circumstances surrounding her death. They did not address a possible motive.
According to the court filings:
On Aug. 5, Vangrinsven had been drinking with the man at the VFW in Isanti, where she worked and where the man holds a leadership position.
Other patrons and staff said the two were demonstrably affectionate with each other. The man told others there he would drive Vangrinsven home because she had too much to drink.
The two went to the Dugout Bar and Grill in Bethel later that night, and Vangrinsven never showed up at home and failed to report for work at the VFW bar the next day.
The man gave investigators conflicting accounts about his actions that day including that he dropped Vangrinsven off at a park near the VFW after she failed to remember where she lived.
Investigators determined that Vangrinsven was last seen with the man and went to his home to question him and later searched the property in the 300 block of NW. 261st Avenue in Athens Township.
On Aug. 10, they inspected ground out back recently turned over by a tractor and located Vangrinsven's body. She had been shot in the head, according to a medical examiner's report.
The man soon checked himself into a Department of Veterans Affairs mental health ward in St. Cloud and remained there until he was booked into jail shortly before 3 p.m. Tuesday.
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482