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Dikken pleads guilty to premeditation, sentenced to life without parole

MONTEVIDEO — Andrew Dikken, 29, of Renville pleaded guilty to premeditated first-degree murder in the death of Kara Monson and to first-degree murder while committing a burglary for the death of Chris Panitzke.

Monson, 26, of Granite Falls, died Sept. 2, 2013, when she was shot in her Granite Falls home. Panitzke, 28, of Redwood Falls, was shot in the home that night and died about a week later. He identified Dikken as the shooter the night of the shootings.

Dikken was arrested about two weeks later after an extensive manhunt in the Minnesota River Valley.

In Chippewa County District Court in Montevideo, Dikken told a packed, tearful courtroom that he was sorry for what he had done and took full responsibility.

However, District Judge Thomas Van Hon said, “I don’t think your profession of remorse today rings true to many of the people in this room.”

After victims of the crime made statements about the impact the killings had on their lives, Van Hon sentenced Dikken to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Linda Vanderwerf

I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.

Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf

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