A hearing for a Bemidji teen charged in connection with an assault at a Grand Rapids group home has been continued to Feb. 2.
Dacota Geoffrey Smith, 18, appeared before Itasca County District Court Judge Jon Maturi Tuesday morning. Smith has been charged with one count of first degree assault, two counts of second degree assault and one count of third degree assault, all felonies, in connection with a Dec. 13 assault that left a staff member of a Grand Rapids group home with great bodily harm.
During the brief court appearance, Smith’s attorney, Chad Sterle, told the court they were still waiting for more discovery in the case and requested the hearing be continued to Feb. 2.
Before granting the request, Maturi noted it appeared there were active warrants on Smith from out of the area. Sterle answered there were, but neither Maturi nor Sterle elaborated on the warrants.
In addition to Smith, three 17-year-old juveniles have also been charged in connection with the assault. According to an earlier release from the Itasca County Attorney’s office, two juveniles made appearances on charges connected to the incident. Those charges were not released.
The statement stated that one juvenile waived his right to claim there is insufficient probable cause to believe he committed the offenses. The second juvenile made a motion to dismissed the four felony offenses, claiming there is insufficient probable cause to believe he committed the offenses.
The statement reported that the court took the matter under advisement and is expected to issue a written decision prior to the juveniles’ next court hearings on Feb. 4.
The prosecution has filed motions to certify the proceedings against the 17-year-olds into adult court.
According to an earlier interview with Grand Rapids Police Chief Scott Johnson and an incident report from the Grand Rapids Police Department, officers responded to the home on 20th Street Northwest around 3:45 a.m. on Dec. 13 after receiving a report of an assault. Officers were directed to a closed door where they noticed a large quantity of blood around the door.
Johnson said officers found a male staff member with serious head injuries. The victim told officers that four residents of the group home attacked him without warning, using fists, a frying pan and pool balls stuffed in a stocking in the assault. The frying pan was allegedly dented out of shape in the assault.
The four then fled before officers arrived. Johnson said one suspect was located near the home while the other three suspects were located near a gas station in Cohasset. All four were taken into custody.
Johnson said it appeared the four had planned to steal a vehicle and then attempt to obtain cigarettes.
The victim was transported to Grand Itasca Hospital and Clinic.
Smith is currently in custody at the Itasca County Jail while the three juveniles, whose names have not been released, are in custody at the Itasca Juvenile Correctional Facility.