Two teens charged in Minneapolis killings

Hennepin County attorney
Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman.
MPR Photo/Greta Cunningham

Hennepin County prosecutors have charged two Minneapolis teenagers with several counts of first degree murder in last week's deaths of a Minneapolis woman, Katricia Daniels, and her son Robert Shepard, 10.

Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman says authorities don't know the motive for the killings, which he describes as incredibly brutal.

Daniels was stabbed more than 100 times, and the criminal complaint alleges that the young men smashed a TV set on Shepard's head.

The young men, Stafon Thompson and Brian Flowers, both 17, were friends of Daniels' 15-year-old son, who lives in Chicago.

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"We don't know why this murder was committed and we may never know why. The level of violence associated with this crime is difficult to comprehend and difficult to imagine," said Freeman. "That level of violence, coupled with the absolute lack of motives, leaves us shaking our heads."

Freeman says it appears the teens were welcomed into Daniels' Minneapolis home when they arrived.

"Why do you go to your friend's house to watch TV with his mother and 10-year-old son, and end up stabbing her 100 times and crashing a TV set over the young man's head? That's just senseless," said Freeman.

Freeman says robbery is one possible motive. He says each defendant is blaming the other for the crimes.

Because Thompson and Flowers are charged with first-degree murder, they are automatically certified to stand trial as adults.