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Pennock man pleads guilty to amended charges in apartment-ramming incident

WILLMAR -- Luis Miguel Solis, 21, of Pennock, pleaded guilty Monday to two felony charges, an amended charge of terroristic threats and to first-degree criminal damage to property, for ramming a Willmar apartment building with his vehicle.

As part of a plea agreement reached in Kandiyohi County District Court, a misdemeanor charge for fifth-degree assault will be dismissed and the terroristic threats felony was reduced from a charge of second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon.

Solis will be sentenced March 27. In the plea agreement, he agreed to pay $2,907.53 in restitution. According to an affidavit filed with the court, the amount is for damages to the building, an insurance deductible and emergency medical care for a man hurt in the incident.

The charges were filed after police were called May 2 to the 500 block of 16th Street Southwest on a report that a vehicle had crashed into a house. Two people there told officers that Solis and the man had exchanged text messages and then got involved in a physical altercation. The man later received another threatening message from Solis. A short time later, two vehicles pulled onto the front yard of the apartment and Solis was driving the vehicle that rammed into the building. The people stated they had to run into the building to avoid contact with the vehicle.

The couple stated that Solis' vehicle rammed the building four times, struck the other vehicle, driven by a woman they thought was his girlfriend, Jessica Ann Nichols, 19, of Willmar, and another parked vehicle. They gave a description of both vehicles and a license plate number for the vehicle Solis was driving.

A large portion of the concrete block wall was completely collapsed and a computer, desk and other objects in the apartment were damaged. A city building inspector determined that the building was no longer safe or habitable. Officers found a license plate for the vehicle in the rubble. The car registered to a relative of Nichols.

An officer drove to the relative's home to ask about the vehicle. Nichols was there and said that she didn't know where Solis was and that he may have taken the car because he had his own key. The officer also saw the other vehicle, with fresh damage to its left side and fluid leaking onto the ground.

Nichols was sentenced in December to two years of probation, a $500 fine and three days in jail on a charge of aiding an offender. She was arrested and charged after investigating officers went to her home after the incident, repeatedly asked her if Solis was in the home and later found him hiding in the attic.

After his arrest, Solis told officers that he and friends had been at Nichols' home drinking and using cocaine. He said he learned that the man was a snitch and went to confront him. He admitted that they got into a fight and exchanged punches. He then said he believed the man killed his dog and later claimed he did not remember anything else that happened and woke up next to a rock somewhere. According to the complaint, he admitted he ran his car into the building but had done so after everyone was in the apartment. He also said he found his dog not far from his home the next day.