ST. CLOUD — A Duluth man has been charged with second-degree murder in the killing of a longtime St. Cloud State University professor.
Stearns County prosecutors say 45-year-old Jason Robert Beckman shot and killed Edward Ward, 68, just after 6 a.m. Sunday.
According to the criminal complaint, Beckman crashed a stolen car in front of Ward's home, and then knocked on the door to get help.
Prosecutors say Beckman told police he thought Ward had pointed a gun at him earlier in the night, but wasn't sure if it was a delusion. He allegedly pulled his gun on Ward and shot him. Ward died shortly after.
The complaint says Beckman suffers from several mental illnesses and admitted to using drugs in recent days. It notes that there is no evidence Beckman had any prior contact with Ward.
Beckman also faces charges of illegal possession of a handgun and felony theft of a motor vehicle.
Judge Frederick Grunke set bail for Beckman at $2 million or $1 million with conditions.