Second suspect jailed in slayings of 4 Minnesotans found in SUV in Wisconsin

A man stands in front of a podium.
Sheriff Kevin Bygd speaks during a press conference addressing the discovery of four Twin Cities residents found shot to death in an abandoned SUV in rural Dunn County, Wis.
Matt Sepic | MPR News

The second man wanted in the shooting deaths of four Twin Cities area residents found Sunday in an abandoned SUV in Wisconsin turned himself in Friday to police in Gilbert, Ariz., the Dunn County Sheriff’s Office said.

The 38-year-old had been living recently in the Phoenix area before traveling back to Minnesota in the past few week, the sheriff’s office said in a statement, adding that he’ll be held in the Maricopa County Jail in Phoenix as he awaits extradition to Wisconsin.

MPR News typically does not name suspects until they are charged. The other suspect in the killings, Darren Lee McWright, 56, from St. Paul, was arrested earlier this week by St. Paul police and charged with four counts of hiding a corpse.

A complaint filed Thursday against McWright said witnesses told police they saw the 38-year-old suspect late Saturday evening at the White Squirrel Bar in St. Paul with one of the victims, Nitosha Lee Flug-Presley, 30, of Stillwater.

The complaint said Flug-Presley’s aunt stated that her niece had a “thing” with the suspect and he would fly in from Arizona to see her. Public records show that he had been living recently in Scottsdale, Ariz.

The other three victims were Flug-Presley’s longtime friend, Jasmine Christine Sturm, 30, of St. Paul; Sturm’s brother, Matthew Isiah Pettus, 26, of St. Paul; and Sturm’s boyfriend, Loyace Foreman III, 35, of St. Paul. The Ramsey County Medical Examiner said they all died from gunshot wounds.

Authorities were able to connect the suspects and victims through surveillance videos and witnesses.

The vehicle and bodies were found Sunday in a cornfield by a farmer in Sheridan Township in Dunn County, a little more than an hour’s drive from St. Paul.

Sheriff Kevin Bygd told reporters on Tuesday that investigators believed there was no local connection to the shootings, that the bodies and SUV were randomly left in Dunn County and that the shooter or shooters left the scene in another vehicle.

Asked about a motive for the killings, Bygd said on Tuesday it was still a mystery.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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