Theft charge filed against Slayton man in Murray County

SLAYTON – More than a year after an investigation into a suspicious trailer that was reported on the property of former Minnesota senator Doug Magnus, a felony-level charge has been filed against David Michael Brown of Slayton for the theft of an enclosed trailer and a 1934 Ford pickup.

The criminal complaint filed in Murray County District Court states the Buffalo Ridge Drug Task Force was following up on the investigation in April of 2013 and found the license plate of the trailer was registered to a local business. That business was not missing any trailers, but said a license plate had been stolen.

When Magnus said the trailer did not belong on the property, law enforcement moved it to the Murray County Sheriff’s Office and inventories the contents. During the investigation, task force agents learned the trailer had been reported stolen in Litchfield.

An agent asked Brown to come to the law enforcement center to discuss the trailer. He complied and said he had purchased the trailer on K-bid.com for $2,000 two years earlier and had not looked inside when he bought it. He admitted he had stolen a license plate so he could pull the trailer around.

The agents learned from the Litchfield Police Department that a 1934 pickup had been inside the trailer when it was stolen. The agent had seen a similar truck while executing a search warrant on Brown’s property during a narcotics investigation in 2012, so he went to contact Brown once more.

When he arrived at Brown’s residence, he was on the phone. He hung up and said he was talking to his attorney about the pickup. He told the agent the truck was at a local service station being held as collateral for money he owed them.

He claimed he had paid cash for the trailer and had no explanation for why he had no transferred title or insurance.

The agents contacted K-bid, who said they do not deal in private sales, only auctions, and they do not sell vehicles without titles. They also claimed they require transfer of title at the time of sale. The K-bid representative said they do not sell sealed storage containers.

Brown was charged in 2012 with four counts of felony controlled substance possession after authorities seized over 100 marijuana plants growing in the back of a truck on his property. A year later he pleaded guilty to one of the charges and was sentenced to five years probation.

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