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Wandering Minn. man suspected of crimes in Hudson

Daniel Robert Paul

A Woodbury man took a stolen car from Minnesota to Hudson, where he lurked around several businesses before being arrested, according to charges filed in St. Croix County Circuit Court.

The suspect, 37-year-old Daniel Robert Paul, was charged July 24 with obstruction, possession of burglarious tools, operating without a license and receiving stolen property.

According to a criminal complaint:

Officers were informed that a person matching Paul's description had been seen earlier in the morning at 4:25 a.m. July 23 trying to get into Fleet Farm. The original caller said Paul appeared to be under the influence; he was stumbling around and had a red duffel bag with him.

At 7 a.m. three Hudson officers were dispatched to another call about a man in his 30s wearing light blue shorts and a gray T-shirt who was described by the caller as "not acting right." The man, later identified as Paul, was spotted by the caller in a black Ford Mustang in the Hudson County Market parking lot. He was filling an orange Home Depot bucket with things from the car and then was seen walking away from County Market on Gateway Boulevard with a grocery shopping cart and the bucket.

Police met the caller near the Menards parking lot and the caller said he had seen Paul in the Burger King lot, where the officers searched and found the shopping cart Paul had been using.

Officers also spoke with a delivery truck driver who said he had seen Paul looking into the back of his truck. He yelled at Paul and then Paul walked toward the hotels on Gateway Boulevard.

A Fairfield Inn worker who had seen Paul reported that he had told Paul he could not give him a room as they were switching over computer systems. He said he had seen Paul walking to Holiday Inn.

Holiday Inn workers told the two officers inside that Paul was around the corner at the vending machine, where he was found carrying a duffel bag that was black with some red color and an orange Home Depot bucket full of things. His behavior was disorganized and erratic.

Paul said he had spoken with police earlier that morning but did not know what he had done wrong and that he was minding his own business. He denied being in the Mustang and the County Market parking lot, but said he had been in Home Depot to buy the bucket. He said he was waiting for a ride back to Woodbury.

The officers asked again about the vehicle and his whereabouts beforehand, but Paul denied doing anything wrong and also looking into the delivery truck.

Paul was later found in possession of brass knuckles.

Two officers examined the vehicle at County Market and found the driver door key hole was visibly damaged. Inside, there were various items thrown about and the ignition was missing.

The vehicle's registration was sent to dispatch, which reported the car was stolen out of Cottage Grove, Minn. The owner's debit card was later found in the car.

The grocery shopping cart was found outside the vehicle containing a broken glass jar with broken glass on the roof of the car.

In Paul's possession were several cell phones, two screwdrivers, paperwork that belonged to the car's owner, the vehicle's ignition, and a fair amount of change in the bucket along with unused insulin needles inside a bag found on the passenger's side vehicle floor.

The red duffel bag Paul had in his possession at Fleet Farm contained a sealed envelope with a letter from Stearns County Child Support addressed to him.

County Market surveillance video showed Paul was the only one coming in and out of the vehicle that morning. A night crew employee identified by a County Market employee was seen at 6:22 a.m. attempting to jump-start Paul's vehicle after he flagged her down for help, but it didn't start and the employee left.

Each of Paul's five charges include a maximum penalty of $10,000 or up to three years and six months in prison. A bail hearing was scheduled for July 30 and arraignment set for Sept. 4.