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Two arraigned in Willmar homicide

WILLMAR – In a packed Kandiyohi County courtroom Thursday morning, two suspects were arraigned in connection with the homicide of David Medellin Jr., 24, of Willmar.

Caleb Aaron Blue, 35, of Willmar, was charged with one count of second-degree murder – with intent – not premeditated for allegedly causing the death of Medellin sometime between Oct. 25 and Oct. 31.

He is being held in the Kandiyohi County Jail on $2 million unconditional bail and $1 million conditional bail.

Lori Jean Harris Gafkjen, 51, of Brooten, is charged with two counts of aiding an offender - an accomplice after the fact, and one count of aiding an offender to avoid arrest – harbor or conceal. All three charges are felonies.

She is being held in the Renville County Jail on $500,000 unconditional bail and $250,000 conditional bail.

According to the complaint filed against them, the victim was found dead in a muddy farm field east of Willmar Oct. 31 with stab wounds.

Blue and Medellin were allegedly seen on video in the Jackpot Junction casino near Morton in the early morning hours of Oct. 25.

According to the complaint, Blue allegedly drove Medellin back to Willmar and made him get out of the vehicle on a gravel rural road. Blue allegedly stabbed Medellin, who then ran into the field.

Blue allegedly told law enforcement officers he chased Medellin into the field and left the field after Medellin was dead.

Blue then called Gafkjen to pick him up and asked her to take him to a doctor because he had cut his hand.

She allegedly took him to receive medical care in Glenwood.

Gafkjen was arrested Nov. 5 in Anoka County in a hotel parking lot where she was allegedly set to meet Blue.

Shortly before she arrived at the hotel, Blue jumped out of the hotel window and attempted to get to his vehicle in the parking lot as law enforcement approached.

No motive for the victim’s death has been disclosed at this time.

Gafkjen allegedly told law enforcement that Blue told her “it had to be done.”

According to the complaint, Gafkjen and Blue became acquainted while he was incarcerated in the Kandiyohi County Jail and she was working there as a Kandiyohi County corrections officer.

Blue’s next court appearance is Nov. 21.

Gafkjen’s next court appearance is Nov. 28.

Carolyn Lange

A reporter for 35 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.

(320) 894-9750