Did drinking party violate an “executive order”?

Local News

Faribault County’s chief prosecutor will decide if a huge party held in August violated an “executive order” issued by Gov. Tim Walz during the coronavirus pandemic.

“As you know, law enforcement investigates. The attorneys charge and prosecute,” says Chief Deputy Scott Adams. “As of right now no one has been charged.”

County Attorney Kathryn Karjala, says Adams, has results of an investigation conducted by the Sheriff’s Department.

Around 1:10 a.m. on Aug. 9 law officers responded to an anonymous tip of several vehicles parked in the yard of a residence on 180th Street and on the roadway in front of a house on 375th Avenue.

Authorities estimate there were more than 200 underage drinkers from Faribault County and neighboring southern Minnesota counties at the party.

Cole Klinkner, 21, of Winnebago who hosted the party was charged with gross misdemeanor contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

More than 25 citations for underage drinking were issued, according to authorities, including to six juveniles.

Adams would not say when Karjala began reviewing the investigation reports or how long it may take before a decision is issued.

“That is a question for an attorney,” says Adams.

Under executive order 20-74, events held in private homes are subjected to social gathering limits of 10 people indoors and 25 outdoors.

Violation of an “executive order” is a misdemeanor and carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Klinkner is scheduled to make his first court appearance in Faribault County District Court on Sept. 14. He faces a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $3,000 fine if convicted.

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