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Karl gains change in visits, not guns

By Staff | Oct 20, 2008

At the request of his attorney, an omnibus hearing for a Blue Earth man charged in a six-hour standoff with authorities is being continued.

“We have been working with County Attorney Brian Roverud and we are hoping to get some helicopter and SWAT team records,” Jason Kohlmeyer told Judge Douglas Richards on Monday.

The Mankato attorney was speaking on behalf of Kevin Robert Karl, 29, who faces two felony counts of second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon. He also has been charged with domestic assault and reckless discharge of a gun.

Richards granted a 30-day delay.

In another request by Karl’s attorney, Kohlmeyer asked his client be allowed unsupervised visits with his children.

He says Human Services was conducting an investigation, but has closed its case. “There was never ever a claim, really, that the child was in any danger,” he says. “Or that Mr. Karl assaulted the child at any point.”

Roverud says he’s opposed to any changes regarding unsupervised visits.

The children’s mother told Richards she thinks it’s really important the couple’s children spend time with their father at this time.

She says the required supervised visit is “really hard” on the children and they want to spend time with Karl alone.

“I understand where Brian’s coming from, but I do feel safe with (the children) staying with their dad,” she says.

The woman told Richards they have a great family and never have had issues like this before.

“I feel like I’m stuck in the middle of everything. My kids are having an extremely tough time right now … they can’t understand why they can’t be with their father,” she says.

Roverud told Richards “any family member or any individual the mother approves of” can supervise the visits.

Kohlmeyer then asked that Karl be allowed to use a rifle or bow when he takes his son hunting. He says his client is an avid hunter.

Roverud says he doesn’t have a problem allowing Karl to hunt with a bow, but not with a gun.

“Until we receive a psychological evaluation and chemical dependency assessment, we are against any modifications we required for possession of firearms,” says Roverud.

Richards denied the requests for use of firearms and unsupervised visits. However, he did modify conditions to allow any relative of Karl’s or the woman’s to be considered an approved supervisor with the children.

Karl was arrested in the early morning hours of Aug. 8 after he allegedly got into an argument with his girlfriend at his rural Blue Earth residence.

The woman called 911 when Karl allegedly fired a gun several times and threatened her. Her 5-year-old daughter was inside the residence and she told police she feared for her safety.

Once a deputy arrived, shortly after the woman got into his vehicle, he heard four to five gunshots fired outside the residence.

The woman told the officer Karl had been drinking and was upset with her because he believed she was cheating on him and told her to move out.

Karl was released from jail after posting $5,000 cash.