After the Minnesota Supreme Court recently ruled that a teenager should be tried as an adult in a deadly attempted carjacking, the case is staying in juvenile court, at least for now.
Husayn Braveheart, now 19, was charged last week in adult court with aiding and abetting second-degree murder in connection with a June 2019 shooting in northeast Minneapolis that killed Steven Markey, 39, of Plymouth. Braveheart was 15 at the time. He was scheduled to make a first court appearance on Nov. 18, but the hearing was canceled after his attorneys successfully filed a confidential motion to dismiss the adult case.
The Star Tribune obtained a copy of the sealed motion that states Braveheart considered appealing the Minnesota Supreme Court split decision.
His attorney, Hennepin County Assistant Public Defender Angela Bailey, filed the motion to dismiss adult charges and keep further proceedings in juvenile court.
"The basis for the request to stay juvenile proceedings is an anticipated appeal of the Minnesota Supreme Court's certification decision to the United States Supreme Court or other legal remedies with the appellate courts," wrote Bailey in the motion.
The dismissal also hinges on a timing technicality, as prosecutor Morgan Kunz, Assistant Hennepin County Attorney, prematurely filed the adult charges.
She argued the Minnesota Supreme Court retains exclusive jurisdiction during the 14 days Braveheart has to file an appeal. Bailey said Kunz filed the adult case before Braveheart was able to fully consider legal remedies before a Nov. 30 deadline.
But in response to the adult charges and subsequent court hearing last week, Braveheart was transferred from juvenile to adult detention the day before the scheduled hearing. He was brought back to the Juvenile Detention Center on Monday, when Kunz filed to dismiss the case.
Kunz did not respond to requests for comment. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman declined to comment, but his spokesman Max Page said in an email that the office can refile charges since the case was dismissed without prejudice, meaning it can be tried again.
But for the time being, Page said all proceedings will be in juvenile court.
"Because of the confidential nature of these proceedings," Bailey wrote in an email, "I am unable to make any public comments about the case."
She addressed her dismissal motion to Kunz, district judges and incoming Hennepin County Attorney Mary Moriarty, who will replace Freeman in January.
Braveheart initially was charged in juvenile court with first-degree aggravated robbery and aiding and abetting second-degree murder. Prosecutors filed to try him as an adult, but the district court denied the motion. The prosecution appealed and the Minnesota Court of Appeals sided with the state before the Supreme Court heard the case.
The Minnesota Supreme Court said the district court incorrectly ruled Braveheart's trauma from lifelong instability in child protective services made him less culpable. Instead, Justice Natalie Hudson wrote "that retaining [Braveheart] in the juvenile system would not serve public safety."