Jury Convicts Mpls Man in Assault of 2 Park Police Officers

Updated: 03/01/2013 12:13 PM KSTP.com By: Leslie Dyste

A jury convicted a Minneapolis man for stabbing two Minneapolis Park Police officers.

Thirty-nine-year-old Marsenior Pede Johnsonon was convicted of attempted murder in a trial that lasted nearly two weeks, according to the Hennepin County Attorney's Office.

The jury also returned two guilty verdicts on two counts each of second-degree and first-degree assault.

According to a criminal complaint, Johnson said, "I wanted to hurt some cops."

Officers Katherine Hammes and James Huber were sent to Bryant Avenue and Minnehaha Parkway in South Minneapolis at 11:30 p.m. Aug. 21. A man had called 911 to report a robber had taken $300 from him at knifepoint.

When Officers Hammes and Huber got to the location, a Minneapolis Police spokesperson said Johnson waved to them.  Believing he was the victim, the officers, wearing their uniforms, got out of their squad car and approached Johnson.

"As Johnson approached the officers he said he had been robbed though he kept one hand concealed in his pocket," said the spokesperson.

Officer Huber ordered Johnson to take the hand out of his pocket. The spokesperson said Johnson "did not comply and continued to approach." Officer Huber tried to push Johnson away. That's when the spokesperson said Johnson pulled a knife out of his pocket and stabbed Officer Huber in the chest.

Huber was wearing a protective vest that prevented the knife from seriously injuring or killing him.

Officer Hammes was standing near the squad car.  The spokesperson said Johnson ran toward her "wildly flailing the knife."  She ducked, was stabbed in the back of the neck, then fell to the ground, hitting her head.

"Johnson then stood over (Officer Hammes) and was preparing to stab her again when (Officer Huber) fired his service weapon," said the spokesperson.

Officer Hammes was treated at Hennepin County Medical Center for her stab wound and a concussion. 

The criminal complaint said Huber fired three shots. In a news release, the spokesperson said Johnson was being treated "for his gunshot wound(s)."

A second phase of the trial will begin on Monday.