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Three crime alerts have been issued for the Twin Cities

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For most of us the month of December is about staying warm, celebrating the holidays and assessing our goals for the upcoming year. Yet on a day like today when three crime alerts have been issued locally, we are reminded that criminals live according to another agenda entirely.

The St. Paul Police Department has announced that tomorrow night, (Thursday, December 19th,) there will be a Level III Predatory Offender Notification meeting from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. at the St. Paul Police Department Eastern District Community Room, located at 722 Payne Avenue. This meeting is in regard to one Noe Junior Contreras, 54, who has moved to the 1100 block of Jessie Street in St. Paul. Contreras is described as a Hispanic male, 5’ 07” tall with brown eyes and black hair. Contreras weighs 161 lbs and is described as being of medium build. Contreras was found guilty of Minnesota Statute 609.344. For more information about Minnesota Statutes, see the following link-
https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=609.344

609.344 is the statute for Felony Criminal Sexual Conduct in the Third Degree. It has been further noted by the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension that Contreras’s charges pertain to a victim who was deemed to have had a mental impairment, and/ or was in a helpless state. The St. Paul Police Department has also advised that Contreras was known to have had sexual contact with two female victims, ages 10 and 21. Both crimes included penetration and on at least one occasion Contreras assaulted his victim while she was sleeping. Contreras was known to his victims.

Community notification meetings are held to educate members of the community, especially those who might care for children, vulnerable adults, or anyone else who might be victimized by a sex offender. Landlords and property owners have received letters regarding this notification and are required to inform their tenants of this. The label “Level III” is used to designate the most dangerous offenders, and contrary to popular belief, it is not related to the manner in which the sex crime was committed, but rather due to the results of risk assessments conducted on that individual. Offenders who resist treatment programs, demonstrate no remorse for their crimes or in demonstrate in other ways that they have not been rehabilitated are most likely to have the Level III title. Further information regarding community notification information in St. Paul can be found at the following link-
www.Stpaul.gov/depts/police/.
More information about recent notifications can be found at the following link-
http://exm.nr/1c1Zb06
More information about predatory offenders in general can be found at the Department of Corrections website at the following link-
www.doc.state.mn.us/level3/search.asp.

You can find out more information about this particular community notification by contacting Officer Matt Toronto at #651-266-5772.

The next crime alert comes from the University of Minnesota, which has seen its share of crime since school began in September. For more information about recent crime on the U of M campus, see the following link-
http://exm.nr/1bQZlq5
According to University police, there has been yet another robbery on the West Bank Campus. On Sunday, December 15th at about 3:30 p.m. a student was studying in the atrium of the Carlson School of Management when a man approached him and demanded his laptop. The thief said that he had a gun, but the student did not see the weapon. After the thief ran away with the computer, the student yelled for help, then chased the thief through the door near the corner of 19th Avenue and 45th Street. The thief dropped the computer during the chase and the victim was able to retrieve it. The robber is described as an African American male, 5’8” tall with a medium build. He had unshaven facial hair and was wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt, dark jeans and shoes that had white on the top half and red on the bottom half. He had silver caps on his lower front teeth. A man was standing in the entryway of the Carlson School and he is thought to be the lookout for this robber. This man is described as African American, wearing dark clothes and a “boot” cast on his left foot.

The University of Minnesota has released a video from the security camera, but because the two men are backlit it is virtually impossible to identify them by this footage. Both the thief and his suspected accomplice can be seen in the video at the 45 second mark. To watch the video, go to the following link-
uservices.umn.edu

If you have any information about this crime, please call the University of Minnesota Police Department at 612-624-COPS (2677), or, you can always leave an anonymous tip at Crimestoppers.
http://www.crimestoppersmn.org/

Last but not least, if you had any doubt that criminals have absolutely no shame, the Minneapolis Police Department has advised of a re-occurrence of an old scam that targets the elderly. The perpetrator of the scam pretends to be a grandchild of an elderly person and contacts the victim by telephone asking for money. Some scammers pretend that they have been in a car accident, others say that they need bail money. The kindly elderly person often thinks that it is their grandchild and wants to help the young person avoid getting in trouble with Mom and Dad. Extortion fees have ranged from $2500 to $9000 in these scams.

In order to avoid being a victim to this scam, police have advised people that if they should get a phone call asking for help, they should ask the caller a question where the answer is information that could only be known by the actual grandchild. Since some of these criminals actually do research on the person whom they are purporting to be, another tactic is for the elderly person to ask for a number where they can call the “grandchild” back. Hopefully a criminal will not want to give out their telephone number in fear of being caught by police.

Readers of this alert are asked to relay this information to any elderly people they might know, especially those who do not have access to a computer and might have not heard about this scam.

If you found this article to be of interest, please click on “+Subscribe” underneath the title of the article to receive free automatic email updates when this author writes again.

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