Mayhem is MN’s fastest growing export

The horrific murder of a Los Angeles model and realtor illustrates the disfunction in Minnesota’s criminal justice system.

The New York Post headline from this morning reads,

Minnesota felon arrested for murder of LA model Maleesa Mooney, who was found stuffed in refrigerator at her luxury apartment

The press release from the LAPD can be read here.

The murder, which occurred back in September, was big news in southern California last fall. It takes a lot to break through the noise in a major media market. KTLA reported at the time,

The City of Angels is rough around the edges. It’s filled with personality, attitude and grit. It’s a big city filled with small neighborhoods and communities. It’s also Hollywood and celebrities and CRIME and ghosts of the past. 

No doubt it’s been host to some of the most gruesome and unusual crimes the world has ever seen: the Manson murders, the Black Dahlia, the Night Stalker, the Hillside Strangler.

Not much fazes us. We’ve seen it all. Until we haven’t.

Not to wallow in the sordid details, but here’s more from KTLA,

Wrists tied. Ankles tied. Gag in the mouth. Signs of a brutally violent struggle. And right there -in the middle of the autopsy- page 8:

”They found Ms. Mooney’s body wedged inside the refrigerator.” 

Mooney’s cause of death was listed as “homicidal violence”… not a shooting or stabbing or blunt force trauma. It’s something one seasoned detective leading the case told me he has NEVER seen in his entire career.

In a more recent report, KABC-7 added this detail,

Blunt force injuries as well as lacerations, abrasions and contusions were found on her face, head, back and upper left arm, according to the report. One rib was fractured.

Now that a suspect has been arrested, it’s once again making worldwide headlines. The accused is Magnus Daniel Humphrey, 41, arrested recently in Hopkins. He was extradited to Los Angeles and booked into the LA County jail yesterday.

He has pled not guilty and is being held without bail, for now.

Normally-soft-on-crime Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon issued a press release on the occasion of Humphrey’s initial court appearance this morning in California. Gascon says,

The heinous disregard for Ms. Mooney’s life will not go unpunished. Justice is being sought, and he will be held accountable.

We’ll see about that.

The news of Humphrey’s arrest was reported on all the southern California media outlets and all the major national media. Back in Minnesota, MPR has part of an AP story on its website. FOX-9 has some details.

The NY Post reports on the alleged killer’s criminal history,

He had been on probation for federal narcotics offenses after being released from prison on Feb. 7, according to Justice Department records.

Humphrey has been convicted of several felonies in Minnesota and Illinois, including gun charges, assaults, sexual assaults, and false imprisonment, according to court records viewed by The Post.

I’m going to focus just on his Minnesota history. To understand the latest sequence of events, you have to rewind back to 2016.

In June 2016, Humphrey was indicted in Federal court in Minnesota on two counts of heroin dealing. In August 2016, he pled guilty to one count.

In May 2017, he was sentenced to more than 6 years in Federal prison (including time served), with the intent to serve his time near Chicago, where he had family.

In March 2019, presumably while serving in a Federal prison out of state, Humphrey incorporated a business in Minnesota called The DM Experience LLC.

He was released, apparently, sometime in the fall of 2021. After that, Humphrey was to serve 5 years of probation, in Illinois, scheduled to end in December 2026.

In 2020, Humphrey’s wife divorced him, in absentia. At the time of his divorce, he was in Federal prison in Colorado.

There are hints on the internet that Humphrey may have spent some time in prison in Leavenworth, KS.

In March 2023, Humphrey was arrested in Minnesota for a January 2023 probation violation (failed drug test). He was shipped back to Illinois.

In November 2023, two months after Mooney’s California murder, Humphrey was arrested (from a traffic stop) again in Minnesota on a new (June 2023) probation violation. The Hennepin County Sheriff’s office released to worldwide media this mugshot of Humphrey dating from November 4, 2023,

He was sent back to Illinois, where he was presumably incarcerated until earlier this month.

In September 2023, when Moody was murdered in Los Angeles, Humphrey should have either been in Federal prison or on probation, confined to Illinois.

Humphrey’s earlier Minnesota state criminal history is worth noting.

Back in 2007, Humphrey was convicted on a 2003 felony charge of being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm. At the time of that case, his address was listed as Chicago, IL.

In 2009. he was picked up on a DWI charge, still with a Chicago address.

2009 also saw Humphrey receive his second felony gun possession conviction, along with a felony conviction for 2nd-degree assault. FOX-9 reports about that 2009 felony case,

In 2009, he was convicted on assault charges against an ex-fiancé in Bloomington- accused of beating her w/picture frames, candlestick + wooden pole. He was required to submit DNA sample when he reported to prison.

In 2013, Humphrey was convicted of 3rd-degree felony assault. The voting rights of this now three-time felon were restored in 2015.

Minnesota doesn’t have a three-strikes rule (or a four-strikes one, for that matter) for felons, so there is nothing in his state record that would have kept him behind bars. But time and again, Humphrey stood before the bench in judgement, and time and again he was spun out the revolving door.