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Murder charges against Alexandria stabbing suspect dropped for now

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News Detroit Lakes,Minnesota 56501 http://www.dl-online.com/sites/default/files/styles/square_300/public/field/image/n_crime_kodyklimek_c1_0.jpg?itok=26ef0vIZ
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Murder charges against Alexandria stabbing suspect dropped for now
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

ALEXANDRIA, Minn. -- The Douglas County Attorney’s Office dismissed murder charges against an Alexandria man Thursday because crucial witnesses could not be located in time for trial.

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Kody Klimek, 26, was charged in a fatal stabbing last year in Alexandria. His jury trial had been set to begin Monday.

“Klimek is claiming self‐defense. Two key witnesses who observed the stabbing could not be located for trial,” Douglas County Attorney Chad Larson said. “The law requires that these witnesses testify in person, in court. It would be irresponsible of me to present this case to a jury without these crucial witnesses and gamble with a verdict."

Instead, Larson said he is dismissing the charges “without prejudice.”

"This means that I fully intend to prosecute this case once these essential witnesses are located and available to testify," Larson said. "This case is far from over.”

Klimek was indicted by a Douglas County grand jury last June on two counts of second-degree murder and one count of third-degree murder. He was accused of stabbing Phillip Altstadt, 28, on June 1 near the Lincoln Estates apartment complex in Alexandria.

Altstadt died at the scene within five minutes of a 911 call.

The Douglas County Attorney’s Office was unable to answer additional questions because the case is still considered open.

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Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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