Minnesota Appeals Court Reverses Rochester Man’s Conviction
St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) - The Minnesota Court of Appeals has reversed the conviction of a Rochester man who was accused of terrorizing a former girlfriend.
In a ruling handed down this week, the appellate court found the constitutional rights of 28-year-old Levell Booth were violated when the judges handling his case failed to rule on his "clear, unequivocal, and timely request to represent himself.” The decision sends the case back to Olmsted County Court, where the Olmsted County Attorney's Office could decide to appeal the ruling, bring Booth to trial on the charges, or drop the case.
Court records show Booth was arrested in April 2020 and charged with felony counts of stalking and making threats of violence. He was accused of entering his former girlfriend's home with a baseball bat and using it to break a window and damage her vehicle. The criminal complaint also alleges Booth would stop by her home uninvited, honk her horn, or watch her from a distance. The officers who responded then called Booth, who denied he was responsible for damaging the woman's property.
A little over a week later, the woman called the police again after she received a threatening text message allegedly sent by Booth that stated "I'm taking your life from you..." When he was arrested, the criminal complaint says Booth became uncooperative after he was placed in a squad car and caused damage to the vehicle by kicking and spitting in the back seat.
He later entered into a plea agreement and admitted to the threats of violence charge, which resulted in a 30-month prison sentence. As of today, the Minnesota Department of Corrections website indicates Booth was released from prison on June 14, but currently lists him as a Wanted Fugitive.