State senator arrested on suspicion of burglary at Detroit Lakes home

Minnesota State Senator Arrested
Democratic State Sen. Nicole Mitchell, right, of Woodbury, speaks with Sen. Robert D. Farnsworth, a Republican from Hibbing, on the floor of the Minnesota Senate on April 2, 2024, at the State Capitol in St. Paul, Minn.
Steve Karnowski | AP

State Sen. Nicole Mitchell, DFL-Woodbury, was arrested early Monday in Detroit Lakes on suspicion of burglary.

Detroit Lakes Police Chief Steve Todd said police received a call about an active burglary at 4:45 a.m. Detroit Lakes police and Becker County deputies responded to the call and found Mitchell in the residence.

Todd said Mitchell, 49, was arrested without incident and no weapons were involved. She was booked into the Becker County jail.

According to Becker County property records, Mitchell has family members who own property on the street where she was arrested.

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Mitchell did not respond to a message, and her Senate office referred questions to a spokesperson for the Minnesota Senate DFL Caucus who said in a brief statement that the caucus is “aware of the situation and has no comment pending further information.”

Elected in 2022 to the Minnesota Senate, Mitchell is a lieutenant colonel in the Air Force Reserve. She is also a former broadcast meteorologist for MPR News.

Todd said he has reviewed and forwarded arrest reports to the Becker County Attorney’s Office for a charging decision. 

Mitchell’s arrest could cause political complications as the Legislature enters its final month of the session. The DFL controls the Senate by a single seat.

Republicans said the public deserves an explanation.

“As information comes out, we expect the consequences to meet the actions, both in the court of law, and in her role at the Legislature,” said Senate Minority Leader Mark Johnson, R-East Grand Forks.

Any kind of ethics action wouldn’t be resolved quickly, but if Mitchell is unable to vote on legislation it could lead to 33-33 results, which stalls bills.