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Teen charged with witness tampering in Willmar criminal sex case

WILLMAR -- A 16-year-old Willmar teen pleaded not guilty to felony first-degree witness tampering Friday for allegedly threatening a witness in the Jose Zapeda-Caballero case.

Selvin Rolando Fernandez was released on his personal recognizance and ordered to have no contact with the witness. His next court appearance in Kandiyohi County District Court is Sept. 4.

According to the petition, a Willmar police investigator met with the witness, also a teenager, who reported being threatened by Fernandez after the case was investigated and Zapeda-Caballero was arrested and charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct. The teen later picked Fernandez out of a photo lineup.