Jury selection to begin Wednesday in murder case | BrainerdDispatch.com | Brainerd, Minnesota

Jury selection to begin Wednesday in murder case

Posted: January 8, 2013 - 10:07pm

Jury selection is scheduled at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Morrison County District Court for a 37-year-old Hutchinson man who is accused of shooting and killing a Little Falls man on Oct. 3, 2011, allegedly over an argument about money.

Jason Ray Dominguez was indicted Dec. 8, 2011, by a Morrison County grand jury on seven criminal counts that include first-degree premeditated murder, first-degree murder while committing an arson, first-degree murder while committing a burglary, first-degree murder while committing aggravated robbery, second-degree intentional murder, second-degree intentional murder while committing assault in the second-degree and a felony in possession of a pistol.

In a plea hearing May 5, 2012, Dominguez pleaded not guilty to the charges. Dominguez has remained incarcerated in the Morrison County Jail.

Dominguez is charged with the killing of Dustin Brown, who was found unconscious in his Little Falls residence early in the morning on Oct. 3, 2011. Brown had been shot seven times and later died at St. Gabriel’s Hospital in Little Falls. Dominguez and Brown had been cell mates in prison. Investigation revealed that Dominguez told several persons that he wanted to kill Brown because he owed him $1,400.

Prosecuting the case is Morrison County Assistant County Attorney Todd Kosovich, along with the state deputy attorney general William Klumpp, Jr.

Dominguez does not have representation, but Morrison County Court Judge Douglas P. Anderson appointed Scott Wonderlich, an attorney in Little Falls, to stand-by as an advisory counsel during the trial.

In an interview with Kosovich during the indictment, he said the first count of first-degree premeditated murder is punishable by life in prison without possibility of parole. Counts two, three and four are punishable by life in prison with possible parole after 30 years. Second-degree murder is punishable by up to 40 years in prison, with parole possible after 27 years in prison. A felony for possession of a firearm is punishable by imprisonment for not less than five years no more than 15 years.

According to the criminal complaint filed against Dominguez:

• Neighbors of Brown reported a one-armed man, identified as Dominguez, had been looking for Brown the past three weeks. Brown’s brother told police that a guy from Hutchinson had been pressuring Brown to do something drug-related that Brown didn’t want to do. Witness also said Brown owed Dominguez money.

• After executing a search warrant and arresting Dominguez at his Hutchinson residence, Dominguez said he, his girlfriend and his girlfriend’s three children traveled Sunday to Little Falls “to go visit a friend.” They arrived in Little Falls between 10-11 p.m. and after first going to the wrong residence they found Brown’s house and met with him.

• Dominguez’ girlfriend also spoke with law enforcement. She said while in Little Falls at Brown’s residence Dominguez and Brown began to argue about money. The girlfriend took her children out to the car and Dominguez joined them later. Then they all traveled back to Hutchinson. Back in Hutchinson, Dominguez got a .380 semi-automatic pistol and Dominguez and the girlfriend drove back to Little Falls.

• In Little Falls, Dominguez had his girlfriend drop him off on the east side of Lindbergh Drive. The girlfriend then drove around the area. A few minutes later Dominguez called her and told her to pick him up. Dominguez told his girlfriend “I shot him seven times,” and showed her seven shell casings. The girlfriend noted Dominguez was covered in blood. Dominguez and his girlfriend then drove into the country and threw the shell casings into a farm field.

JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at jennifer.stockinger@brainerddispatch.com or 855-5851. Follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jennewsgirl.