The "cruel" murder of a well-known neighborhood mechanic in his Minneapolis garage could bring an especially long sentence for the man convicted of the crime.

Rondell R. Camp, 25, who had been living in north Minneapolis before the killing in late January, was found guilty last week of second-degree murder in the death of 56-year-old Stephen Parker Sr. in the garage in the 3700 block of Aldrich Avenue N. Camp remains jailed without bail ahead of sentencing on Oct. 23.

Hennepin County District Judge Jamie Anderson can exceed sentencing recommendations and impose a term of 40 years because Camp "was particularly cruel and his victim was particularly vulnerable," read a statement from the county attorney's office after the jury's verdict.

Police arrived at the garage on Jan. 29 and saw a pool of blood under Parker's head and a box wrench under his shoulder. He had cuts to his head, broken bones in his face and a stab wound to his neck.

Police found Camp in the alley screaming in pain from a leg wound. Camp claimed self-defense during the trial; the defense alleged Parker had a gun. The prosecution countered that the gun was far from Parker and was free of blood, suggesting he had not been holding it.

Camp's prior criminal history included nothing more serious than minor drug offenses.

Paul Walsh