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Dave Roepke, Published September 17 2009

Moorhead intruder autopsy results withheld

Moorhead police say they have the autopsy of the 17-year-old boy fatally shot in a stranger’s apartment in June but won’t release it.

The investigation is still open because investigators are waiting for other forensic evidence to return from the state crime lab, said Lt. Tory Jacobson.

While the case is still open, Jacobson said, police won’t release the report by the Ramsey County medical examiner.

Jacobson said the wait is normal and police aren’t trying to delay the case.

“We’re not sitting on something big here,” he said. “That’s just the nature of the investigation.”

Jacobson wouldn’t identify what additional reports investigators haven’t received or say whether the toxicology report has been returned.

Toxicology results could be important in the case.

Witnesses – including the shooter, Vernon Allen – have said that 17-year-old Joel LaFromboise seemed intoxicated the night he wandered into the apartment of Allen and others.

The family of LaFromboise has said they don’t think he was using drugs or drinking.

Allen shot and killed LaFromboise after the teen swung at him and then refused to leave. Allen told The Forum he pulled the trigger when LaFromboise grabbed the barrel of the shotgun.

LaFromboise’s father has said he’s angry Allen was not charged with a shooting he sees as a murder.

Once the investigation is complete, the results will be turned over to prosecutors in Clay County to see if charges are warranted.

Moorhead Police Chief David Ebinger said a preliminary autopsy confirmed witness accounts.

Ebinger also said in June that getting full autopsy results would take two to four weeks.


Readers can reach Forum reporter

Dave Roepke at (701) 241-5535