(Dakota County, Minnesota: 11/6/2017) Don’t let the media blackout leave you in the dark…read here information and documentation of abuse and court failures in the Grazzini-Rucki case suppressed by mainstream media.
Recent coverage of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s criminal appeal by the Associated Press gained nationwide attention in a report that was sanitized, and omitted crucial information (much of this information is publicly available, and posted online) including:
*the history of domestic abuse in the Rucki family
*abuse the Rucki children suffered at the hands of their father, David Rucki Rucki social service records
*David Rucki’s long history of violent and criminal acts druckipolicereports
*the failures of Judge David L. Knutson, and the Dakota County family court to protect the five Rucki children from abuse The court created horror of the five Rucki children
*Judge David L. Knutson’s response when abuse allegations were raised was NOT to protect the Rucki children but to force them into a relationship with the abuser, David Rucki. The“deprogramming” and “reunification therapy” ordered by Judge Knutson further traumatized the children Letter by S.R. 2013
ALL of which created a crisis that caused the two Rucki teens S.R. and G.R. to run away back in April 2013, and led to subsequent criminal charges against mother, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, for her role in assisting the girls.
Never once does the AP mention that S.R. and G.R. spoke out on numerous occasions, stating the reason why they ran away on April 13, 2013, was because of the abuse they suffered from their father, and because of the court’s actions against them.
Never once does the AP mention that Sandra raised the affirmative defense during her criminal trial, and that by law if she could prove her actions were taken to protect her children from imminent harm, they would be not considered criminal. Only after Judge Karen Asphaug suppressed 75% of defense evidence, did it become impossible for Sandra to prove the affirmative defense… meaning the jury convicted Sandra after being deprived of the facts (an issue also raised on appeal). Dakota County disallows nearly all Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s evidence and only then is she convicted
Instead, what you see from the AP report is a cherry picking of the facts that leaves readers in a very similar situation as the jury faced in the Grazzini-Rucki criminal trial.. left to make conclusions about Sandra, and this case, without having all of the information or facts available. This is very dangerous considering.. In a criminal case, this can lead to the innocent being found guilty. When incomplete or misleading information is presented as factual news, it creates propaganda. And the children at the heart of this case still remain unprotected.
The Criminal Appeal: Conviction Upheld
The Minnesota Court of Appeals upheld the criminal conviction of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, found guilty of 6 counts of felony deprivation of custodial rights, for her role in assisting her two teenage daughters S.R. and G.R. who ran away in April 2013 after the family court failed to protect them from abuse.
The girls remained in hiding for 2 years, living on a therapeutic horse ranch. When given opportunities to return to the care of their father, S.R. and G.R. refused, citing fear for their safety. Witnesses who interacted with the girls during this time confirmed that their behaviors were consistent with abuse, and both appeared highly fearful – especially at the mention of their father. Multiple Witness Reports: Rucki Sisters Fearful of Father, Felt Safe at Ranch
Family court records reveal that S.R..and G.R. raised allegations of physical, emotional and sexual abuse throughout proceedings. Not only was Judge David L. Knutson aware of the abuse, but after personally speaking to the Rucki children in chambers, he sealed the proceedings to suppress the abuse allegations they raised. Judge Knutson refused to take action to protect S.R. and G.R., or any of the other Rucki children, and called them “liars” and accused them of being “brainwashed”. S.R. criticized Judge Knutson in a June 2016 interview with police saying, “I’m not a fan of Judge Knutson, I don’t want to hear about that guy, he’s a dick. Honestly, he made such bad decisions… The decisions made by whoever in the court were so horrendous that they shouldn’t even be allowed to do it anymore. You can’t make a mistake like this, and ruin people’s lives, and think it’s ok..” Pressured, Threatened S. Rucki Bravely Speaks Out Against “Horrendous” Family Court
Sandra made every legal effort to protect her children – fighting all the way to the Supreme Court – to no avail. Sandra encountered a new abuser in the court system – in judges David L. Knutson and Karen Asphaug who sympathize with, and enable, her violent ex-husband, David Rucki, in his continued legal assaults against her. As a result, Sandra is now homeless, destitute and forcibly separated from the children she loves. For the Rucki children, who have been court ordered to live with an abuser, their future remains uncertain.
The Criminal Appeal: Sentencing Overturned
The Appellate Court upheld the conviction but did find error in the actions of Judge Asphaug during sentencing. The Appellate Court ruled that Judge Karen Asphaug erred when ordering Sandra to annual stints of sentence-to-serve as well as serving yearly jail time on the anniversary that S.R. and G.R. were found, lasting until the year 2022. Judge Asphaug also ordered that Sandra would not be eligible for early release from probation. If fully imposed, the sentence ordered by Judge Asphaug would far exceed the maximum jail time allowed under sentencing guidelines.
After sentencing, Sandra petitioned the court to execute her sentence – meaning serve all of her time at once but was denied by Judge Asphaug.
In a November 2016 court hearing, Prosecutor Kathryn Keena and a Dakota County probation officer also recommended that Sandra be allowed to execute her sentence. Again, Judge Asphaug refused and in an unusual move, dismissed the probation officer from Sandra’s case.
The Appellate decision will now allow Sandra to execute her sentence, and with time served she could face up to 42 days in jail as the remainder of her sentence.
David Rucki, who caused real harm to Sandra and the children, remains unpunished; largely due to the protection he has received from the Dakota County judges.