Explosive Expose by Michael Volpe: Did judges in Sandra Grazzini-Rucki case previously fix husband’s cases?

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Read the Explosive New Expose by Michael Volpe : Did judges in Sandra Grazzini-Rucki case previously fix husband’s cases?

(Dakota County, Minn) This article draws upon court records and legal research that suggests David Rucki has received special treatment in cases presided over by both Judge David L. Knutson  and Judge Karen Asphaug. From Volpe: “The judges in Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s criminal and family court case may have previously fixed cases for her ex-husband, raising further doubts about the fairness of their rulings.

David Rucki

David Rucki

In one incident, Judge Karen Asphaug presided over a criminal charge of disorderly conduct against David Rucki.

The charge resulted after an incident on September 8, 2009, where Rucki was arrested after becoming aggressive and threatening towards his neighbors. According to the complaint,”He stated the suspect (Rucki) threatened his wife, his son, then called them all assholes…

A juvenile victim reported that Rucki called her mother “a crazy lady” and “a stupid bitch“. And said Rucki threatened,”If any of you assholes ever call the police on me again, I’ll raise holy hell.”

Another juvenile victim reported that Rucki threatened him and swore at him, call him a “little son of a bitch“.

According to witness statements, Rucki’s behavior was escalating to a frightening level. David Rucki thinks “asshole” is an appropriate term for a three year old.

The same neighbor filed for a harassment order  after this incident HRO Filed Against Rucki 2009 and then installed security cameras around his home.

This image below was taken from additional security cameras that ex-wife Sandra Grazzini-Rucki had installed around her home, capturing on numerous occasions where Rucki was stalking and harassing Sandra and children. Even after a protect order was filed, Rucki would not stay away…. or abide by the law.

frisked

The police report also suggests that Rucki knew that he he could avoid criminal charges in court.  Rucki’s behavior indicates that he really does think that he is above the law – above any consequences. All of this is happening before Rucki ever sets foot in court.

Back to the police report:

Officer Michelle Roberts writes in her report,”Suspect (Rucki) told me that he didn’t have to listen to me. I advised him that if he would not allow me to question him regarding the specifics, I would have no choice but to charge him with disorderly conduct based on their allegations.

He stated,’Go ahead, it’s their word against mine and you can’t prove anything.’

I told him I would mail him a citation for disorderly conduct and he would have the opportunity to give his side in court. He responded,’I’m not going to show up for court, this is bullshit.’  He then said,’You guys can get the fuck off my property.’ Suspect approached us two additional times, each time arguing that we couldn’t take their word over his.

In a supplemental report written by Officer Barb Maxwell, she took a complaint from the neighbor regarding Rucki’s frightening behavior towards his family. Officer Maxwell notes that when she attempted to speak to Rucki, he “..tried to intimidate me. I introduced myself and stated,’I am here because of a complaint on your dogs.’ Rucki got very close to me and said,’There is NO complaint on my dogs‘, and from that point on I was unable to say another word.” Rucki then went on to refer to the neighbor as a “bitch” when speaking to the police.

Where is Rucki’s attitude coming from? Is this the typical mentality of an abuser or is there something more.. is someone protecting Rucki from within Dakota County,  the legal system?

 The disorderly conduct case came before Judge Karen Asphaug, on 12/31/2009 when a preliminary hearing was held. A trial date was then set. But before the case could go to trial, the defense filed a motion to dismiss for “lack of probable cause.” That motion was granted without a hearing by Judge Asphaug and the case was abruptly thrown out.

 

How could there be “lack of probable cause” when witnesses to the crime included police officers? When there would be physical evidence such as dog feces and paw prints in the neighbor’s yard? When there were multiple witnesses? When an HRO was granted? When Rucki was making comments to police that implicated himself in the crime?
somethingshady

David Rucki (Facebook)

 That Judge Asphaug presided over this prior disorderly conduct case  against Rucki should have disqualified her from later presiding over the criminal case of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki. That Judge Asphaug had knowledge of an incident involving a criminal charge against Rucki, where he was accused of violent behavior, creates a conflict of interest.
Further, this incident with the neighbor should have been allowed as evidence at Sandra’s criminal trial. The neighbor had also written letter to describe his experiences with Rucki,”In our near decade of living next to him I have found him to be a very angry individual rages at anyone who has contention or confronts him. It got so severe against our family that the court awarded us a restraining order in September 2009….
As police reports can verify, he has boldly cursed profanely at, and tried to intimidate Lakeville’s female animal control officer. It is logical to conclude he is capable  of more towards those more vulnerable, such as his wife and children.victimletter
Instead, Judge Asphaug suppressed this evidence from the jury in the criminal trial of Sandra, forcing the jurors to find her guilty of parental deprivation because without evidence, the defense was not allowed to effectively argue it’s affirmative defense. Judge Asphaug also concealed her prior involvement with Rucki, and that she dismissed the disorderly conduct charges under unusual circumstances.
Judge Asphaug suppressed other evidence in the criminal trial of Grazzini-Rucki, including (Volpe):Although Rucki had appeared before this judge charged with violating a restraining order, however, the jury was never informed of this. That’s because the judge disallowed any mention that anyone ever took out a restraining order against Rucki when, in fact, four separate restraining orders were successfully taken out against Rucki. Ironically, Judge Asphaug also disallowed any mention of Rucki’s long criminal record as well as letters written by the children involved.
Judge Karen Asphaug (Twitter)

Judge Karen Asphaug (Twitter)

If that were not outrageous enough, Judge Asphaug refers to David Rucki again and again in the criminal trial as the victim, and in heavily sympathetic terms.
Victim? David Rucki is clearly a man who has demonstrated a propensity towards violence. He violates protective orders. He threatens his family and neighbors. And has tried to intimidate police… and more… David Rucki is NOT a victim. He is a dangerous predator.

There is much more to this expose that offers new details on the #grazzinirucki case, including shocking information about Judge David Knutson’s prior involvement with Rucki. Plz read the full article and share with friends, on social media :Did judges in Sandra Grazzini-Rucki case previously fix husband’s cases?

 

Additional Info:

The Fix: Grazzini-Rucki Case Discussed on “The Long Version”

Police Report, HRO: David Rucki is Dangerous, Not Safe Around Children

Judge Karen Asphaug Issues Nationwide Warrant for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki While Still Held in Jail – Homeless Sandra Told to Give Court an Address

Judge Karen Asphaug (Twitter)

Judge Karen Asphaug (Twitter)

Furthermore, the court accepts Ms. MacDonald’s representation that Petitioner (SGR) is homeless. A person who is homeless, by definition has no residence.” ~ Judge John R. McBride, dismissing OFP petition Grazzini-Rucki v. Brodkorb, 9/22/2016

Dakota County, MN: Judge Karen Asphaug issued a nationwide arrest warrant for Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, citing a probation violation for not disclosing her address to the court. Sandra is currently homeless, and not a resident of the state of Minnesota. The arrest warrant comes even though Sandra is already being held in jail, and no bail hearing has ever been conducted. Judge Asphaug insists that Sandra must complete her sentence with 6 years of probation and conditions, forcing her to live in Minnesota for the duration of probation. Judge Asphaug refuses to allow Sandra to finish her sentence in prison. Judge Asphaug is wasting valuable time and resources of the courts, correctional department and costing the tax payers of Dakota County when this case could be quickly, and efficiently resolved by having Sandra complete her sentence in prison.

Source: Dakota County Jail Inmate Search November 2016

Source: Dakota County Jail Inmate Search November 2016

On Monday, November 21, 2016, at 9 am, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki will face Judge Karen Asphaug for a hearing concerning the alleged probation violation. According to records, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was taken into custody on November 3, 2016, and is currently in custody at the Ramsey County Workhouse. The violation concerns Sandra’s alleged “refusal” to provide the courts with an address to where she lives. Why has an arrest warrant been issued against someone who is already being held in jail? Sandra has not even had a bail hearing. Usually the court places a hold on a prisoner NOT issue a nationwide warrant. Homeless Sandra Grazzini-Rucki has made so many appearances in the Dakota County Judicial Center, that indeed, it could be listed as her address.

Dakota Co. Courthouse

For Judge Asphaug to demand that Sandra disclose an address is ridiculous – Sandra is considered long-term homeless, meaning she does not have a permanent address. Sandra also is not a resident of the state of Minnesota. Sandra was arrested by US Marshals on October 18, 2015 in Florida for felony deprivation of parental rights and subsequently brought to Minnesota, and booked into jail on November 5th. Since November 5, 2015, Sandra has been homeless – she has been held in jail for much of that time, and alternately, reported to be “couch hopping”.

 

Sandra is considered “long term homeless” meaning she has been lacking a permanent place to live for a year or more, or has been homeless at least 4 times in the past 3 years (both requirements for long-term homeless apply to Sandra). Many homeless individuals resort to “Couch hopping”; which is a term for temporary shelter (i.e. sleeping on the couch). Couch Hopping does not offer permanent shelter, so even if an individual is temporarily staying in one location, it is not considered a permanent address. In Sandra’s situation, she has only been able to obtain temporary shelter, she is homeless and without an address.

Factors to becoming long-term homeless include: being previously homeless for long periods of time, faced with a situation or set of circumstances likely to cause the individual to become homeless in the near future, discharged from a correctional facility, lack of sufficient resources and unable to pay for a place to live. ALL of these factors apply to Sandra. Minnesota Housing Finance Agency: Long-Term Homeless Definitions

Further, Findings of Fact (#6) and testimony from the September HRO hearing validate that indeed Sandra is homeless, and without a permanent address, “Petitioner’s lawyer, Ms. MacDonald, informed the Court that her client is “homeless.” (Ms. MacDonald used the word homeless.) Ms. MacDonald further indicated that her client had been homeless since the year 2012. Ms. MacDonald stated that she had permitted Petitioner to stay in her office, and that her client was staying there at the time of filing the instant petition. Ms. MacDonald did not indicate how long her client had been staying in her office.“ Defendant Michael Brodkorb also argued the HRO be dismissed on grounds of “improper venue” meaning Sandra had not proven her address to be permanently residing in Washington County. Judge McBride later accepted that Sandra is homeless, and has no permanent residence; his ruling to dismiss the HRO is based on Sandra’s inability to prove residency in Washington County.

Judge McBride determined in his ruling that, “3. Minn. Stat. § 609.748 does not supply a definition of the term residence. Elsewhere in the law, however, residence is defined as “the place where a party has established a permanent home from which the party has no present intention of moving.” Minn. Stat. § 518.003, subd. 9. It is doubtful that Petitioner ever established a “permanent home” in her lawyer’s office. 4. Furthermore, the Court accepts Ms. MacDonald’s representation that Petitioner is homeless. A person who is homeless, by definition, has no residence. It follows that Petitioner does not have a residence in Washington County.

Public Domain: http://absfreepic.com

Public Domain: http://absfreepic.com

Second, Judge Asphaug is basically demanding that a resident (who?!?!) in Minnesota offer to give Sandra shelter, at their own financial expense, and endure the invasions of legal involvement on their own personal lives just so Sandra can comply with probation…for the next 7 years.

Those who have offered temporary shelter or shown support of Sandra have faced retaliation from David Rucki and his sister, Tammy Love, and/or been subjected to intrusive, and unwanted, legal and police action. Some examples – police seeking information about Sandra sought a warrant to search the home of a friend, the home was ransacked and personal property unrelated to the case, and not subject of the warrant, went missing (never to be recovered).

In another incident, The Carver County Corruption blog and The Red Herring Alert blog both published news and information about the Grazzini-Rucki case and were later threatened with legal action, and possible criminal charges, from David Rucki who was represented by a high-buck attorney, Marshall H. Tanick. The administrator of the Carver County blog was so terrified that she shut down her blog completely, and one administrator from Red Herring Alert has also removed herself from the blog, and attempted to erase the articles she had written out of fear.

In another incident, Sandra temporarily stayed at a residential apartment held belonging to her family law attorney, Michelle MacDonald (the apartment is used for business purposes including hosting clients). The address of the apartment was blasted all over news media and the internet, interfering in the privacy of not only MacDonald but the neighbors as well. Michael Brodkorb hired a private investigator to do surveillance, and take photos and video of the apartment. Brodkorb continues to make active efforts to discover where Sandra is staying, and with whom.  It is no wonder that Sandra can not find a temporary place to live in Minnesota… which would involve not just a few days but a full 7 years of her probation! Anyone who offered Sandra shelter would be subjected to terms of probation that would include having their home randomly searched. Not to mention the threat of legal action by David Rucki. Who would sign up for that? What Judge Asphaug is asking is outrageous – there is a simple, and efficient solution and that is to have Sandra serve the remainder of her sentence in prison.

It is wrong for Judge Asphaug to seek criminal charges against Sandra for an alleged “probation violation” for a crisis that Judge Asphaug alone is responsible for. Sandra has complied with the terms of probation, she does not pose a risk to the public. The challenges Sandra is facing directly relate to her being homeless, and also relate to the ongoing retaliation and legal abuse perpetrated on her by David Rucki and by extension his attorney, Lisa Elliot, and corrupt agents the Dakota County court and legal system.

 

Items of Concern:

  1. Judge Asphaug’s mishandling of the criminal case of Sandra Grazzini-Rucki do not serve the best interest of justice.
  2. Sandra has requested to execute her sentence, and shown a willingness to complete her sentence in prison. Judge Asphaug has refused to allow Sandra to execute, and has recently requested that Sandra be placed on a GPS/Ankle Bracelet. Judge Asphaug is going against the recommendation of the probation officer, who has requested to the court that Sandra’s probation be revoked, and that she be sent back to jail.
  3. Sandra does not have the ability to pay for the costs associated with the GPS/Ankle Bracelet. She is currently not working, and her only source of income is a minimal amount public assistance. She is struggling to survive and not able to meet the basic costs of living let alone to afford massive court fines, and exorbitant child support payments (that is based on imputed income and not actual evidence).
  4. Sandra was afforded a public defender. Judge Asphaug has revoked the public defender. Meaning Sandra is now going to court without legal representation, and lacking the proper knowledge needed to defend herself.
  5. Sandra’s situation meets the criteria for long-term homeless; she should not be punished because she does not have a permanent address. Additionally, Sandra had been living out of state when she was brought to Minnesota to face criminal charges – she has not resided in Minnesota for several years. The nature of how and why Sandra was brought to Minnesota, demonstrates that she would not have a permanent address here.
  6. When an individual is considered long-term homeless, they may seek temporary shelter known as “couch hopping”. Temporary shelter does not count as permanent or stable housing. That Sandra does not reveal an address is not a probation violation, it is an expression of her being homeless – she does not know where she will be staying, or how long she will be allowed to stay there.
  7. Sandra does not pose a danger to herself, to the community, or to anyone else. She has complied with her probation, and conditions of release. The challenges Sandra is facing is directly related to the experience of being homeless. Due to the conditions of her probation she is unable to work in her profession as a flight attendant because she cannot leave the state. Sandra lacks the resources to maintain housing. For Judge Asphaug to refuse to allow Sandra to complete the rest of her sentence in prison is cruel and unusual punishment because Judge Asphaug is condemning Sandra to stay in Minnesota for 7 years in a situation where she would be homeless, unable to support herself, and at risk of emotional and physical harm while she is struggling to survive.
  8. Minnesota Law allows for revocation of probation, which is what should be done in Sandra’s case. Judge Asphaug is wasting the valuable time and resources of the courts, law enforcement and the correctional facility pursuing this reckless course of action against Sandra. In addition, tax payer dollars are being wasted. – It is unjust for the Grazzini-Rucki case to cost the citizens of Dakota County, and the state, so much when this case can be quickly resolved by revoking probation, and allowing Sandra to complete the rest of her sentence in prison. 

     

     

Shocking Interview from Grazzini-Rucki Case – Brodkorb Goes Rogue, Dronen Wants to Make Rucki Girls Wards of the State, More…

I honestly believe Judge Knutson is psychotic, that I have no doubt. I’ve sat in his courtroom, the guy is absolutely crazy. I believe there needs to be a lot of changes in family court as well….

If David Rucki is as crazy as these Girls say he is, then I don’t know what he is capable of...” ~ Lori Musolf, prosecution witness

Lawless Lakeville, Dakota County, Minn:  Lion News has released a shocking audio of the Lakeville police interview between Detective Dronen and Lori Musolf, witness for the Prosecution in the Grazzini-Rucki case. This interview covers a variety of subjects including abuse allegations, family court failures, and interference in the investigation of the runaway Rucki girls by Michael Brodkorb.

During the interview Detective Dronen admits that confidential information about the open investigation into the disappearance of the Rucki girls had been obtained by Brodkorb. Dronen was concerned because Brodkorb was contacting witnesses without the knowledge or consent of the Lakeville police, who were handling the investigation. Lakeville’s investigation into the missing Rucki girls became contaminated as Brodkorb contacted witnesses before the police could secure the information and then leaked sensitive details in his articles, which were widely distributed. 

musolf2

Additional testimony from Doug Dahlen reveals that the Star Tribune reporters, Brandon Stahl and Michael Brodkorb, knew ahead of time that police would raid the ranch to take the Girls. Dahlen states that reporters from the Star Tribune were calling the Grant County Courthouse a day ahead of time, and were asking when a warrant would be served.  This leak of information, and the inappropriate involvement of the Star Tribune has created an unsafe environment for the Rucki girls, whose safety and well-being came second to the media sensation their “recovery” would generate.

Doug and Gina Dahlen cared for the runaway Rucki sisters, who refused to return to father David Rucki because he abused them. Source, ABC News: http://abcnews.go.com/US/minnesota-sisters-missing-years-lived-plain-sight-time/story?id=38190862

Doug and Gina Dahlen cared for the runaway Rucki sisters, who refused to return to father David Rucki because he abused them. Source, ABC News: http://abcnews.go.com/US/minnesota-sisters-missing-years-lived-plain-sight-time/story?id=38190862

Ironically, Brodkorb blasted all the adults who “did nothing” while the Rucki girls were missing – and now he qualifies as one of those adults, seeing that he had knowledge of where the Girls were staying for at least 24 hours and did nothing to notify local police or intervene. This happening while Brodkorb admits father, David Rucki, was an emotional wreck over the disappearance of his daughters. So Brodkorb also lied to Rucki and did not disclose to him that he knew where the Girls were, and let him suffer. All of this so Brodkorb could break the the story that would make his comeback after an adulterous affair, and a drinking problem destroyed his political career and nearly ended his life.

Michael Brodkorb, source: startribune.com

Michael Brodkorb, source: startribune.com

Also in the interview, Musolf discloses that Sandra Grazzini-Rucki was afraid of ex-husband David Rucki, and specifically stated “she acted like she was terrified of this man” and “she thought he would kill her if he had the chance. Musolf comments that Sandra used burner phones because she was afraid Rucki would track her down (a tracking device was placed in the wheel well of a friend’s vehicle. Police traced that device back to Rucki’s house). The behaviors Musolf describe in Sandra are common in women who have suffered abuse. In the criminal trial, it was portrayed that Sandra used burner phones to avoid arrest for the disappearance of her daughters. Evidence suggests otherwise, yet Prosecuting Attorney Kathryn M. Keena  promotes a lie. This is prosecutorial misconduct.

Musolf candidly expressed fear of Rucki and stated she “did not trust David Rucki” and was concerned that he would harm her because she assisted his daughters in running away, and was a friend of Sandra. This is coming from a prosecution witness who testified against Sandra, yet is also building her case. Sandra plead the affirmative defense in charges that she hid her daughters from Rucki, meaning she took action to protect her children from imminent harm or abuse. Sandra was found guilty of felony deprivation of parental rights; critics argue she could not prove abuse happened yet evidence that abuse did happen continues to mount even after Sandra’s conviction.

David Rucki

David Rucki

In a bizarre twist. Musolf tells Detective Dronen that she believes that the Rucki girls have “alot of psychological” and should not be placed with either parent when they are found. What is so unbelievable is that Musolf is a self-proclaimed victim advocate. Musolf’s attitude and actions could pose a risk of harm to an abuse victim or other vulnerable person because she shows no understanding about abuse, and its effects on children. Also troubling is that Musolf is basically stating that Sandra, the victim, has said or done something that is comparable to the horrific abuse Rucki inflicted on his family. NO victim of abuse could ever do anything to justify the abuse inflicted on them. If a so-called “advocate” does not understand that, what is she really advocating for? Detective Dronen agrees with Musolf, and says he thinks the Rucki girls should become wards of the state to get the help they need. 

Wards of the state? The “help” the county offered has done nothing but bring pain and upheaval to the Grazzini-Rucki family. How much more damage will Dakota County inflict on Sandra and her children? .

Help raise awareness, and fight for a worthy cause – please comment, like, repost and share.

Public Domain: http://chainimage.com/

Public Domain: http://chainimage.com/

 

Note: Musolf is the only person who has not been criminally charged for her role in assisting the runaway Rucki girls. Musolf remained in contact with the Rucki girls in the days after they ran away and arranged their interview with Fox 9. During the Fox 9 interview, both Girls disclosed allegations of abuse committed by their father and expressed fear of him. Musolf was listed as a witness for the Prosecution in the Sandra Grazzini-Rucki criminal trial but did not testify in court.

Special thanks to Lion News for posting this video 🙂

Comment on Grazzini-Rucki Case from a Child Advocate: The Court System in this Case is Causing Harm

In Response To: https://justice4grazziniruckifamily.wordpress.com/2016/09/07/horrendous-family-court

Canadian Advocate for Abused Children left the following comment:

I’ve been following this disgraceful, unprofessional treatment of these young LADIES and their Mother since the beginning.

These Young LADIES are not children. They have a mind of their own and it’s clear that the system and father is trying very hard to manipulate them. To recant the truth, and claim their mother did some sort of brainwashing called the “bogus” Parential Alienation Syndrome/Parential Alienation. There is no evidence this even exists. Yet, the system of so called professionals are suggesting that this is all the mothers fault.

In this interview this young lady has answered her question, yet she is still trying to make her say her mother was involved in the plan. Anyone can ask different questions in hopes to get the answer they want. It’s clear manipulation. Believe me a teenager at this age can not be manipulated to answer a question of lies unless they are threatened to do so. This case needs a qualified domestic violence lawyer that only deals with cases like this. The pro Bono lawyer’s that came on to the Tishmoni case would be great for these girls and mom. How can they even consider putting mom in jail for this. Most if not all mother’s would of done the same thing if their daughter/son called them in a panic. The court system in this case is causing harm to these girls and mom.

This court is so bias and abusive mentally to these girls and mom. Forcing your kid’s to be with you in spite is what I see this so called “father” is doing. It’s called domestic violence by proxy. I see black robe syndrome all over this case. If I was a family member I’d sue this court in criminal court and also make complaints on the family court judge. For the way he’s handled a case of domestic violence by proxy.

I’m a child advocate and work at a women’s shelter and I’ve never heard such unprofessional, unethical, biased judge other then Gorcyca with the Tishmoni case. Removal from the bench needs to happen with both.

Whatever goes around comes around. If you believe in God…He’s watching.”

TearsDakotaCounty

 

Pressured, Threatened S. Rucki Bravely Speaks Out Against “Horrendous” Family Court

horrendousfamilycourt2

Lakeville, Minnesota: Lion News released an emotional video excerpt of the June 30, 2016 interview between Samantha Rucki and Detective Kelli Coughlin. LION NEWS: EXCLUSIVE VIDEO OF SAMANTHA RUCKI CALLING DAKOTA CO. JUDGE KNUTSON A “DICK”

The shocking video begins with Samantha tearfully crying, “It never should of happened, I just want to be with my Mom.” At another point in the interview, Samantha says, “I just wanted to be with her (Sandra) and no one would let us…

Samantha was questioned about her two-year long disappearance following a family court order that temporarily granted custody to paternal aunt, Tammy Jo  Love, and placed the Rucki children within the control of abusive father, David Rucki. The Rucki children raised numerous allegations of abuse against their father and also stated that they did not feel safe in the care of Tammy Jo Love.

Samantha admits she was “guilted” by her father, David Rucki, to do an interview with police and told to “recant”.

Earlier this week, journalist Michael Volpe reported on the same interview: Explosive Rucki police interview adds new wrinkle to story

Volpe elaborates on the interview, offering additional details, including, “Initially, the younger Rucki told the Detective that her father attempted to threaten her ahead of the interview, “They (her father and his sister) basically said I have to (go to the interview) and I have to be here and I have to recant everything I said and it’s going and that’s the way it’s gonna be- and they made me feel guilty about it and I started to cry.”

This tampering takes on extra meaning because when Samantha testified in her mother’s trial, the court took the unusual step of allowing Samantha to testify by Skype and out of the view of the jury. Her father, his sister, her grandmother, and attorney were all in the room all out of the view of the jury.

At least one child did recant his story – Nico Rucki previously disclosed physical and mental abuse from his father, has now changed his story and says it was Sandra who pressured him to make those claims. Was Nico subjected to the same treatment as Samantha had described?

Comments made in the police interview suggest that Rucki terrorized his family. Samantha states she felt “frightened”, and witnessed escalating violence in the home, “It was constantly screaming, and he (David Rucki) was getting to the point where he was starting to get physical.”

Samantha admits she ran away because she was in a “panic” and says the failures of the Dakota County Family Court -specifically  Judge David L. Knutson, Julie Friedrich (Guardian ad Litem), Dr. Gilbertson (a therapist) – contributed to her decision.

Sandra’s criminal trial was presided by Judge Karen Asphaug, who refused to allow the transcript or audio of this interview to be entered as evidence. Judge Asphaug also refused to allow a domestic violence expert to testify on Sandra’s behalf; 75% of evidence submitted was withheld from the jury.

Sandra is due to be sentenced September 21st – she has been charged with 6 felony counts of depriving custodial rights. The circumstances surrounding her conviction raise concerns that she did not receive a fair trial.

Also concerning is the safety and well-being of the Rucki children. David Rucki went to great lengths in an attempt to silence Samantha…what has he got to hide, and what lengths will he go to bury the truth?

 

Judge Karen J Asphaug

Judge Karen J Asphaug

 

Judge David L Knutson

Judge David L Knutson

Dr. James Gilbertson, PhD

Dr. James Gilbertson, PhD

Guardian ad Litem Julie Friedrich

Guardian ad Litem Julie Friedrich

David Rucki “Paper Divorce” Scam

Dakota County, Minn, August 2016: Trucking contractor, David Rucki’s false statements and refusal to provide information about his finances in legal proceedings suggest an ongoing pattern of  fraud and financial abuse.

crackedrucki

David Rucki (Fox 9)

False statements include: Rucki lied during the criminal trial of ex-wife Sandra Grazzini-Rucki when making claims that he was duped into signing a divorce settlement in 2011, claiming that he had no knowledge of what was happening. In truth, Rucki signed over a dozen documents, in front of numerous witnesses, and willingly entered into the original divorce settlement.

Rucki lied when stating that Sandra masterminded a “paper divorce” scam that stripped him of everything he owned. What did Rucki lose? He retained a multi-million dollar company and its assets, retained numerous vehicles and property and eventually won sole custody of all five children. The truth is that Sandra was forcibly separated from her children, left homeless and destitute, and stripped of her portion of the family trust (a non-marital asset) as a result of an unjust family court order. The entire proceeds of Sandra’s portion of the trust were turned over to Rucki. Rucki is also the beneficiary of his own, separate family trust; which has remained intact.

Assistant Dakota County Attorney, Kathryn Keena

Assistant Dakota County Attorney, Kathryn Keena

During the criminal trial, Rucki’s lies about the financial aspects of the divorce were repeated by Prosecuting Attorney, Kathryn M. Keena. Keena had possession of the Grazzini-Rucki family court file, and either ignored or suppressed evidence to endorse Rucki’s sob story. Rucki’s lies about the “paper divorce” were used by Keena to discredit Sandra during the criminal trial. Keena portrayed Sandra as a vindictive ex-wife who would do anything to destroy poor Rucki, including financially wipe him out. Rucki is now claiming he suffered extreme emotional distress, and that Sandra should be given the harshest penalty possible. Keena attempted to impose an aggravated sentence against Sandra but was unsuccessful because the case does not meet the legal standard for aggravating circumstances. Keena Drops Aggravated Sentence Against Sandra Grazzini-Rucki/

Claims of Rucki’s victimization are not supported by fact. Court documents, and testimony from Rucki himself, reveal a much different story that what he has recently portrayed to the jury, and to the public about the “paper divorce”. Unmasked, Rucki’s claims are that of an abuser projecting his own heinous deeds onto a victim. David Rucki is a man who is willing to destroy his own family, and put his children through the pain of divorce, in order to benefit financially from a scam he alone concocted. Rucki calls this scam the “paper divorce”.

Rucki’s Sob Story: Fact or Fiction?

Prevailing themes in the Grazzini-Rucki divorce and custody dispute, and its aftermath, involve allegations of domestic violence, and financial fraud. What is lost in the court, and following media controversy is that abuse has impacted the Grazzini-Rucki family at every level, even financially.

David Rucki’s divorce sob story, and alleged financial ruin, was prominently featured in an article published by Laura Adelmann, reporter with the Sun This Week at the end of July 2016: Revealing testimony highlights Grazzini-Rucki trial  Adelmann offered “revealing testimony” from Sandra’s criminal trial, including testimony from Rucki who claimed he was victimized in divorce proceedings.

Testifying in the criminal trial, Rucki accuses Sandra of pushing for an “on paper only” divorce. However, in family court, Rucki admits the “on paper only” divorce was his idea. Rucki stated during a deposition on August 8, 2011 that a “paper divorce” was needed “to get the business going” and he “didn’t think it would be the end of his marriage (abuse involves the exploitation of the victim). Findings from Judge Knutson (Re-Opening of the Judgement and Decree) also state that Sandra did not know about the “on paper” divorce and there was “no meeting of the minds”. In other words, Rucki conned Sandra during divorce proceedings.

Rucki lied during the criminal trial when testifying about the “paper only divorce” and assigned blame to Sandra. Rucki’s comments are significant because these false statements were used to paint Sandra as a vindictive ex-wife, which contributed to her being charged with 6 felonies. Prosecuting Attorney Keena had the Grazzini-Rucki family court file available to her, and referred to it during trial. Instead of presenting facts, Keena chose to present a lie in order to build her case and secure a win.

The Paper Divorce Scam

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The “Paper Divorce” began with a mutually agreed upon divorce settlement and resulted in Rucki successfully contesting the divorce, claiming he did not read or see the documents and was tricked into signing by Sandra. At the same time as he claiming to be a victim, Rucki admits divorce had financial advantages for him, that it would benefit his business.

According to court documents, “Respondent (Rucki) alleged that the parties agreed to a ‘paper divorce’, which would allow Petitioner (Sandra) to access some funds from a trust while parties continued living as husband and wife.” Sandra’s portion of the family trust is a non-marital asset, Rucki is not entitled to it – there is not any stipulation in the trust documents that would allow Rucki to access funds as he described. Rucki not only felt entitled to the trust, but ruthlessly pursued it.

Is it plausible that David had no idea what was going on with the divorce, as he claims? Laura Adelmann reports: “Rucki also testified that he arrived home one day in 2011 to discover he was divorced, and Grazzini-Rucki called police who removed him from their Lakeville home. I never went to a court proceeding or saw anything,’ David Rucki said. ‘I couldn’t figure it out.’ Adelmann also reports: “David Rucki testified he returned later that night and took photos of the divorce decree that awarded sole custody of their children to Grazzini-Rucki and severed his rights to the house, property and everything they owned.”  Rucki, a successful businessman and trucking contractor, has signed countless contracts and other legal documents throughout his career, and now is unable to understand his own divorce settlement? 

Source: Movato.com – David Rucki retained ownership of this home after the original divorce settlement. He has claimed the divorce left him with nothing – yet retained ownership of a business, and other assets.

A paper trail of court documents, and other evidence, indicate that Rucki was aware, and actively participating in the divorce proceedings that he now claims he knew nothing about. Rucki met with Sandra to discuss the terms of the divorce, he signed multiple documents and agreed to settlement on April 19, 2011. Rucki also signed a waiver of counsel and declined his right to legal representation. Dissolution was granted on May 12, 2011, Judge Wermager approved of the settlement.

Further, Rucki admits in court proceedings that he wanted the divorce to provide additional revenue for his business: “Respondent (Rucki) testified that Petitioner and Respondent had discussed getting a divorce ‘in paper only’ for financial purposes…” 

While Rucki’s story has changed numerous times about the “paper divorce”, Sandra’s has remained the same, “Petitioner (Sandra) testified that she did not know what Respondent was talking about when he referred to an ‘in paper only’ divorce.”(Findings of Fact, Order Dated 9/21/2011, Judge Knutson). Adelmann reports the same, “In court, Grazzini-Rucki denied she suggested getting a divorce on paper so she could access the trust funds.

The only person who benefited from the “paper divorce” is Rucki. When it was no longer beneficial to be associated with this scam, he shifted the blame onto the victim, Sandra.

Adelmann reports: “The order also required David Rucki to pay $3,673 per month in child support and $10,000 per month in spousal maintenance, according to court documents.It left me with zero,’ Rucki said. He said Grazzini-Rucki had earlier proposed they divorce ‘on paper only’  so she could access $1.5 million from a family trust.” Question – how does Rucki go from not knowing anything about the divorce, to reciting specific details that indicate he is aware of the terms of settlement? Once again, Rucki cannot keep his story straight!

Also notice that Rucki’s focus during his testimony about the “paper divorce”is on himself, and completely ignores the impact this would have on the children. In another example, taken from the August 8, 2011 deposition, Rucki says the fair way to handle the property division after the divorce is to “sell it all”. When asked where the children would live (if the house were sold), Rucki replies, “That is something we will have to figure out when the courts figure it out.” Rucki is totally unconcerned that his actions could cause the children to become homeless, and yet he portrays himself as the victim.

Rucki bankrolled his business on Sandra’s misfortune. Rucki’s own words, recorded in a transcript from August 8, 2011  “In order for me to get working again and to get a credit line back, right, was to get rid of the existing credit line that was there two hundred some – I don’t remember what the exact number is – hundred dollars, I don’t know what… She (Sandra) told me she can get the money, and I kept asking where; she never told me, and that she would pay off the credit line. Now that allows me to work and go after re-establishing getting a new credit line okay?

The kicker to this story was, she didn’t tell me that she was going to take the house (Ireland Place) that we used as collateral against the loan; so on May 12 that whole thing unraveled for me. Now she pays off, she is my godsend and paying off this terrible loan, and all of a sudden, she pulls the carpet from under me and takes the house; now I have nothing to back the loan, okay? That’s one of the problems I have with the bank right now, I have no collateralization.”. Rucki states later in the same transcript that Rucki Trucking “is almost defunct”.  Adelmann reports, He also stated Grazzini-Rucki told him the trust has a provision that if she or other siblings were divorced and struggling financially, they could access some of its money and get some financial relief.” There is no provision in the trust documents that states what Rucki claims. Rucki was scrambling to establish another credit line, and preyed upon Sandra to do it. The same house, Ireland Place, is also connected to allegations of mortgage fraud.

Judge David L Knutson

Judge David L Knutson

Also concerning, is the response of the court. In the Re-Opening of the Judgement and Decree Judge Knutson found that: “Even if Respondent (Rucki) did have the opportunity to review the Judgement and Decree, Respondent (Rucki) testified that he thought parties were agreeing to a ‘paper divorce’. The mismatch between the parties’ intentions provides sufficient evidence of mistake to vacate the Judgement and Decree on these grounds alone. clearly, there was no meeting of the minds with respect to the Stipulated Judgement and Decree.” In his own words, and in front of Judge Knutson, Rucki admits he devised the “paper divorce” scam and used the courts to swindle Sandra out of her portion of the family trust. Rucki’s “intention” clearly involved fraud, and manipulaton. Judge Knutson ignores that a criminal act is taking place right under his nose, and then extends preferential treatment towards Rucki. The result has been disastrous for Sandra, the children, and now even the public is at risk. The term “the Rucki Divorce” is now being used to describe the legal precedent this case has created. 

Aftermath

Rucki is expected to make a victim impact statement at Sandra’s sentencing on September 21st – his words will weigh heavily on the sentence imposed against Sandra. Prosecuting Attorney Keena has already attempted to give Sandra an aggravated sentence, imposing a harsh penalty because, she claims, Rucki has suffered so much. Will society be safer with Sandra in prison? Or does the true danger exist in a court system that is willing to put an abuse victim, who sought to protect her children, in jail in order to protect a dangerous abuser?

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Michael Volpe Reports: Sandra Grazzini-Rucki Convicted After 75% of Defense Evidence Withheld

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Journalist Michael Volpe, Communities Digital News (CDN), recently wrote an article describing a short history of the Grazzini-Rucki case, offering new details about abuse allegations and other evidence that was withheld from the jury in Sandra Grazzini-Rucki’s criminal trial.

Sandra raised the affirmative defense at trial, meaning she assisted her teenage daughters in running away because she feared for their safety. Volpe writes, “Approximately 75 percent of the evidence her defense planned to use was disallowed by Dakota County Judge Karen Asphaug.The jury was only presented with one side of the story, that of Assistant Dakota County Attorney, Kathryn Keena, and was not allowed to review  evidence and supporting documentation or hear from crucial witnesses that would provide additional information on the events leading up to when the Rucki sisters ran away. This means the jury was not allowed to gain an understanding of the context in which Sandra made her decision.

Sandra will likely appeals with decision.

Read the full article here: Sandra Grazzini-Rucki convicted of hiding daughters

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Judge Karen J Asphaug

Judge Karen J Asphaug

Kathryn Keena

Kathryn Keena