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BREAKING NEWS

Yahnke charged with assult

By Staff | Aug 2, 2008

John Yahnke

An 18-year-old Blue Earth man held in Faribault County Jail for possession of explosives faces a new charge.

John Andrew Yahnke was charged with fifth-degree assault during an omnibus hearing Monday in Faribault County District Court on his original felony count.

According to a jailer incident report, the assault charge stems from a fight between Yahnke and another inmate, 17-year-old Selerino Del Angel.

Yahnke was moved to F block and placed in administrative lockup from July 23-29.

“He was locked up 23 hours a day and could not have any visitors. He was isolated from the other inmates for their protection and his,” says Geary Wells, jail administrator.

The location of the cell and cameras, says Wells, allows jailers to monitor Yahnke more closely.

The two prisoners began fighting in the west end of the main jail hallway, the report says, in front of C block at 7:25 a.m. on July 23.

Deputy sheriff Shane Dulac, corrections officer Mark Lacher and assistant jail administrator Joe Anderson tried to break up the fight. The two stopped after Dulac pointed a taser at them and ordered them to quit fighting.

Del Angel was treated by a local doctor for a cut on his lower lip and was given a tetanus shot.

Yahnke and Del Angel have different versions of who started the altercation, but other inmates interviewed indicate Yahnke was the “main aggressor.”

They say teasing between the two the night before got out of hand and both talked about fighting the next morning at breakfast time.

The assault charge is prosecuted by the city attorney’s office and a pre-trial has been scheduled for Aug. 11. “Although he was in county custody, the charge is a misdemeanor,” ex-plains Daniel Lundquist on why the city is prosecuting the case.

On his felony charge, Yahnke entered a not guilty plea and his attorney, Bill Grogin, asked Judge Douglas Richards that time be set aside for a trial.

“We’re requesting a speedy jury trial,” says Grogin.

Although no dates have been set, a two-day trial will be held.

The charge of explosives possession with the intent to make a bomb carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Yahnke remains in custody and is being held on $10,000 bail.