ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Willmar woman sentenced to supervised probation in revenge porn case

After multiple appeals, a Willmar woman has been sentenced to supervised probation for sharing an image, without consent, of a woman engaged in a sex act. The case was dismissed, appealed and sent back to the local court twice and ultimately didn't move forward until the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that the law was constitutional.

gavel.jpg
We are part of The Trust Project.

WILLMAR — A Willmar woman has been convicted and sentenced in a 2017 case in which she was accused of sharing sexual images of another person without consent, often called revenge porn.

Sahra Abdilahi Ahmed, 26, was sentenced June 6 in Kandiyohi County District Court to a stay of imposition of sentence on a felony conviction of nonconsensual dissemination of private sexual images with the intent to harass.

Sahra Abdilahi Ahmed
Sahra Abdilahi Ahmed

Ahmed was convicted of three charges in a court trial in February, but she was not sentenced on two similar charges.

Ahmed was accused of posting the same image of a woman engaged in oral sex with a man. It was posted on several social media platforms. The woman’s face was identifiable in the photo. Ahmed was also accused of vulgar taunts aimed at the woman on social media.

If Ahmed completes all the requirements of four years of probation set by Judge Stephanie Beckman, the charge will be reduced to a misdemeanor on her record.

ADVERTISEMENT

Latest on crime and courts
The Tribune publishes Records as part of its obligation to inform readers about the business of public institutions and to serve as a keeper of the local historical record. All items are written by Tribune staff members based on information contained in public documents from the state court system and from law enforcement agencies. It is the Tribune’s policy that this column contain a complete record. Requests for items to be withheld will not be granted.
Kimberly Carol Kohls, 60, made her first appearance Tuesday in Kandiyohi County District Court on a felony weapons charge. Law enforcement subdued her with non-lethal rounds Sunday and took her into custody after a standoff.
The Tribune publishes Records as part of its obligation to inform readers about the business of public institutions and to serve as a keeper of the local historical record. All items are written by Tribune staff members based on information contained in public documents from the state court system and from law enforcement agencies. It is the Tribune’s policy that this column contain a complete record. Requests for items to be withheld will not be granted.
Smoke bombs and crowd control tactics were employed as protesters took to the streets in an unpermitted protest that police say challenged their ability to keep everyone safe.
The Sartell, Minn. based company, however, has faced allegations of failing to provide adequate care to inmates, including 27-year-old Hardel Sherrell, who died in 2018 in the Beltrami County jail in Bemidji after his pleas for help were ignored by jail and medical staff.
The Tribune publishes Records as part of its obligation to inform readers about the business of public institutions and to serve as a keeper of the local historical record. All items are written by Tribune staff members based on information contained in public documents from the state court system and from law enforcement agencies. It is the Tribune’s policy that this column contain a complete record. Requests for items to be withheld will not be granted.
Tommi Hintz described how she became increasingly suspicious of her two friends, eventually learning of the homicide but still assisting in the disposal of Ricky Balsimo's remains in Lake Superior.
The British socialite, 60, was convicted in December of five charges, including sex trafficking a minor, for recruiting and grooming four girls to have sexual encounters with Epstein, then her boyfriend, between 1994 and 2004.
Summary: Judy Huth waited nearly 50 years. That is one long-delayed victory. But the fact that Bill Cosby will finally have to pay for what he did that night should give pause to those who would prematurely declare the death of the #MeToo movement at the hands of Amber Heard. Forget about Heard.
The Tribune publishes Records as part of its obligation to inform readers about the business of public institutions and to serve as a keeper of the local historical record. All items are written by Tribune staff members based on information contained in public documents from the state court system and from law enforcement agencies. It is the Tribune’s policy that this column contain a complete record. Requests for items to be withheld will not be granted.

Ahmed was ordered to complete 16 hours of community service weekly during the entire time of her probation. The community service could be waived by her probation agent if she is employed, in school or has other structured time that is consistent throughout the week.

She was ordered to pay $140 in fines and court fees.

Ahmed was ordered to serve two 30-day stints in jail beginning Dec. 15, 2023, and Dec.
15, 2024. The jail time may be waived by her probation agent if she is in school or working.

Other conditions include writing a letter of apology, remaining law-abiding, participating in victim/offender mediation if the victim is willing. Otherwise, she is to have no contact with the victim. If they are in the same public place, she is to make no eye contact and remain 50 feet away.

Ahmed was first charged in October 2017. The charges against Ahmed were dismissed twice by Beckman, and both dismissals were appealed. A ruling by the Minnesota Supreme Court sent it back to Kandiyohi County for a third time.

In May 2018, the judge ruled there was no probable cause to bring the charges.

Prosecutors appealed, and the Minnesota Court of Appeals decided in December 2018 that the ruling was in error and returned the case to the district court.

Ahmed appealed that decision to the Minnesota Supreme Court, which did not accept it for review.

ADVERTISEMENT

When the case returned to Kandiyohi County District Court, an earlier constitutional challenge to the law was considered.

More from LINDA VANDERWERF
Thanks to federal pandemic aid, Willmar's summer school has been able to offer experiences for students in addition to their academic classes. School officials say experiences offer students a chance to get to learn about their community and expand their vocabulary.
Grande Day Parade attendees enjoyed the treats, saw a collection of floats and watched bands dance during Willmar Fests annual Saturday parade.
More than 9,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 were reported in Minnesota in the past week, and the deaths of 36 people were attributed to COVID-19. Hospitalizations related to COVID-19 have been near 400 for the past several weeks.
As director of food and nutrition services for Willmar, Montevideo and New London-Spicer schools, Annette Derouin was always on the lookout for a program that could offer a new way to feed kids. She brought locally grown food to school cafeterias, and has been honored by the state and national school nutrition associations.
The Willmar School Board will meet Monday to consider the next school year's budget and seeking bids for a proposed expansion of Willmar Middle School. The board meets at 4:30 p.m. at the Willmar Education and Arts Center.
A tip from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children led to a felony charge against a Litchfield man for disseminating sexual images of minors. He has been sentenced to four years supervised probation with numerous conditions.
Confirmed new cases of COVID-19 continue to add up in the south central region of the state. There were 506 new cases and one death in the last week.
Federal pandemic relief funding has helped keep Willmar Public Schools operating for the past couple years, but as the funding recedes, budget cuts could be on the way. Since three-quarters of the district's budget is in employee pay and benefits, it's likely staff cuts could be coming in 2023.
Dr. Mark Eakes, of Granite Falls, now faces a total of seven felony charges of criminal sexual conduct related to pelvic, rectal or breast exams on four patients from 2019 to 2021. He made his first court appearance March 21 on three felony charges against one alleged victim, and the criminal complaint against him has been amended four times since then. He was in court again June 13 to appear on the seven total charges. In an agreement with the Minnesota Board of Medical Practice, he is not practicing medicine while the charges are being resolved.
COVID-19 test results reported to the state in the past week surpassed 11,000 new cases. Nearly 50 deaths were reported, too. In west central Minnesota, one death and nearly 560 cases were reported.

In August 2019, Beckman dismissed the charges, ruling that the law prohibiting nonconsensual sharing of sexual images was “unconstitutionally overbroad.”

Days later, that ruling was appealed. The Court of Appeals agreed the statute was unconstitutional and upheld the dismissal of the charges.

An appeal of that ruling to the Minnesota Supreme Court was put on hold while the court ruled on another case challenging the statute.

The Supreme Court ruled in February 2021 that the act of sharing intimate images without permission “presents a grave threat to everyday Minensotans whose lives are affected by the single click of a button.”

The government is allowed to limit First Amendment protections as long as it’s done narrowly “to protect the lives of its citizens.”

The Supreme Court ruling sent the case back to the district court again.

In 42 years in the newspaper industry, Linda Vanderwerf has worked at several daily newspapers in Minnesota, including the Mesabi Daily News, now called the Mesabi Tribune in Virginia. Previously, she worked for the Las Cruces Sun-News in New Mexico and the Rapid City Journal in the Black Hills of South Dakota. She has been a reporter at the West Central Tribune for nearly 27 years.

Vanderwerf can be reached at email: lvanderwerf@wctrib.com or phone 320-214-4340
What to read next
The funeral service for Anthony "Tony" Schmoll will be July 7. He died in an accident at his home north of Willmar.
The men were killed when their motorcycles collided with a truck.
Area funerals scheduled through July 9, 2022
The Legislature failed to approve a transportation bill this session, and the Minnesota Department of Transportation is still assessing what the impact will be in terms of accessing federal dollars and inflationary losses for delaying projects.