Willmar man sent to prison for firing flare gun at victim
Firing a flare gun at another man after an argument a year ago has earned a Willmar man a 52-month prison sentence.
WILLMAR — A Willmar man has received a 52-month prison sentence for firing a flare gun at a man’s head last year.
Abel Villanueva, 38, was sentenced Friday in Kandiyohi County District Court to the four-year, four-month sentence with credit for a little more than a year — 393 days — already served in jail. He is to pay $215 in fines and court fees and is to pay restitution once it has been determined.
Under state law, Villanueva must serve at least two-thirds of the sentence in prison and may be able to serve the remainder on supervised release.
He had pleaded guilty in September to a charge of second-degree assault causing fear. At sentencing, charges of fifth-degree assault, fifth-degree drug possession and criminal in possession of a firearm, all felonies.
According to court records, Villanueva argued with a man at the Speedway on South First Street in Willmar late in the evening of Oct. 24. He allegedly fired a flare gun at the back of the man's head as he walked away outside the building. Villanueva ran away and left in a vehicle, according to the complaint.
Officers responding to a trespass complaint at the Highland Apartments on Oct. 28 found Villanueva and arrested him. They confiscated 3.28 grams of methamphetamine in a cigarette package he carried and a hypodermic needle on his person, according to the criminal charges.