Man causes scene at courthouse

A North Saint Paul man faces several charges after allegedly engaging in a scene at the Washington County Courthouse after refusing to go to a mental health facility.

The man, identified as Eric Paul Woodford in court documents, allegedly told Washington County Sheriff’s deputies in a courtroom Jan. 3 that he did not want to comply with a mental health hold order and became agitated.

According to court documents, after one of the deputies grabbed Woodford’s arm to place handcuffs on him, Woodford spun around and struck the officer, knocking the glasses of the deputy’s face. Woodford then punched the deputy two times.

Court documents state that Woodford broke free of deputies, picked up a wooden chair in the waiting area outside the courtroom and threw it at another deputy responding to the disturbance. That deputy dived out of the way to avoid being hit by the chair and broke his arm.

Court documents said Woodford was apprehended after being Tasered and allegedly insisted on being taken to the county jail instead of the hospital because he assaulted a deputy.

Court documents added that Woodford was escorted to the Government Center parking lot, pulled away from deputies and fled on foot. He ran south across Minnesota Highway 36 and was finally caught at an Oak Park Heights apartment building.

Woodford faces charges of third-degree assault causing substantial bodily harm, fourth-degree assault against a probation officer, fourth-degree assault for physically assaulting a peace officer, obstructing the legal process and fleeing a peace officer.

Court documents indicate Woodford has a history of mental health issues and also faces other charges in other counties.


Stillwater man faces assault charges


A Stillwater man faces two charges of domestic assault after a Dec. 29 incident.

Court documents said Stillwater Police officers found the assault victim in her nightgown with obvious face and neck injuries and scratches on her body. She told officers her injuries were caused by her boyfriend, identified in court documents as Michael Isaac Stulberger. The victim claimed Stulberger had choked her to the point of blacking out.

Police contacted Stulberger, who was allegedly naked on a bed upstairs and had multiple knife lacerations to his stomach and arms. Court documents said Stulberger initially told officers his girlfriend caused the wounds. But  when officers told him the stories didn’t match up, Stulberger allegedly admitted his wounds were self-inflicted.

Stulberger and the victim were treated by Lakeview EMS and Stulberger was arrested. Court documents state that Stulberger has two prior domestic assault related convictions within 10 years in other counties.


Man allegedly sucker-punched at party


Washington County Sheriff’s deputies responding to a medical call at a party at a private residence in Lakeland found a man seriously injured after he was allegedly assaulted at the party.

Arriving deputies found the victim lying on the ground and a female was holding a towel to his ear. The victim allegedly appeared intoxicated, tried to get up and was unable to answer deputies’ questions.

The woman said the victim had been “sucker-punched” by a man identified in court documents at Ryan Lawrenze Johnson. Several other party guests told deputies the victim was punched by Johnson as he was turning away from his alleged assailant.

The victim’s brother allegedly received a text from Lawrenze two days after the incident saying the victim’s family had every right to be angry with him and he loved the victim as his friend.

The victim was diagnosed with an SA hemorrhage in his frontal lobes and in the left temporal lobe, temporal bone and jaw fractures and a traumatic brain injury. Court documents indicate that due to the nature of the victim’s injuries, the investigation and future medical diagnoses are ongoing.