A sentencing worksheet has been ordered for a Bemidji teen charged in connection with an assault on a group home staffer.

Dacota Geoffrey Smith, 18, appeared before Itasca County District Court Judge Jon Maturi Monday 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 hearing, defense attorney Chad Sterle told the court that discovery in the case was not yet complete and he asked that the case be scheduled for a hearing on Jan. 13.

“We hope to have a resolution (to the case) by then,” Sterle said.

Prosecuting attorney Dave Schmit requested a guideline sentencing worksheet on the first degree assault charge and then told the court that the prosecution would be filing a notice of aggravated sentencing. Sterle added that Count 2, one of the second degree assault charges, should be included in the worksheet.

Three 17-year-old teens have also been charged in connection with the assault. In a statement from Itasca County Attorney Jack Muhar, he stated a motion has been filed to certify proceedings against the juveniles into adult court. Probable cause hearings have been set in the juvenile cases for Dec. 31 and certification hearings have been set for Jan. 14 and Feb. 4.

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.


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