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19-year-old sentenced in crime spree sent to secure unit at Prairie Lakes in Willmar, Minn.

WILLMAR — A district judge has ordered that Andrew Charles Wyman be held in the secure unit of Prairie Lakes Youth Programs until Thursday morning and that Wyman stand for a Dec. 17 review hearing in Kandiyohi County District Court.

In an order issued Monday, District Judge Bruce Christopherson ordered that Wyman, who is now 19, return to the non-secure unit at Prairie Lakes after Thursday. According to a hearing request filed by Wyman’s probation officer Monday, Wyman was sent to the secure unit on Sunday for breaking program rules in the youth program.

Wyman was originally sentenced in September 2011 by District Judge Kathryn N. Smith to both juvenile and adult sentences on arson, burglary and theft charges for his role in the two-week crime spree of stealing and destroying vehicles and setting fire to an occupied Willmar home.

While he was serving his juvenile sentence, Wyman absconded from Prairie Lakes in February and was taken into custody April 3 by CEE-VI Drug Task Force agents. He admitted during an April 23 hearing that he and his roommate absconded from Prairie Lakes and then he hitchhiked to California. He lived there for a month before calling his mother, who provided a bus ticket and cash to return home. Wyman said he then stayed at his father’s home until he was arrested.

Wyman said during the April hearing that he ran from Prairie Lakes because he was going to be penalized for small infractions and assumed he would be sent to prison. The teen read a statement to the judge and cried as he said that he was scared and would do anything to not go to prison.

In May, Judge Smith ordered Wyman to return to Prairie Lakes and complete the programs in both the secure and non-secure units of the center. The judge was pointed in her final words to Wyman during that hearing to decide whether or not the teen should go to prison or be ordered to other rehabilitation program options.

“I mean this with my heart: You go back a step, you’ve lost your chance,” Smith said, urging Wyman to use the programs to learn how to be a responsible, productive citizen. “If you choose not to invest yourself, you know what the consequences are.”

At that time, Smith told Wyman’s probation officer, John Petron, that she expected an immediate probation violation report if Petron felt Wyman was not making adequate progress in the program. She also ordered reviews of Wyman’s case every 60 days.

Wyman is sentenced under extended juvenile jurisdiction, under which the teen has a stayed adult sentence that is imposed only if he does not comply with the juvenile sentence. Wyman’s stayed adult sentence is 75 months in prison on the first-degree arson charge. He was also ordered to pay $100,000 in restitution.

Wyman’s accomplice, Chase John Hodapp, 20, of Willmar, was sentenced to 39 months in prison for his role in the April 19 to May 3, 2011, crime spree. According to the State Department of Corrections website, Hodapp is at the Minnesota Corrections Facility at Stillwater. His expected release date from prison is July 3, 2013, and his release date from supervision is Aug. 2, 2014. Hodapp also was ordered to pay $39,219.54 in restitution and $450 in fines.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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