Bail set at $75,000 in kidnapping case

By Janice Gregorson

Bail was set at $75,000 for a Rochester man now facing kidnapping, assault and other charges for allegedly forcing his former girlfriend out of a car at knifepoint because she went out with another man.

Damon Scott Russell, 26, 3832 16th Ave. N.W., was arraigned before Olmsted District Judge Robert Birnbaum on Monday on felony charges of kidnapping, false imprisonment, second-degree assault, making terroristic threats and gross misdemeanor interference with an emergency call. Birnbaum set bail at $75,000 without conditions attached or $40,000 with conditions. Russell returns to court Oct. 13.

The charges stem from incidents that allegedly occurred Saturday night. According to the criminal complaint, police went to 37th Street and North Broadway after a witness saw someone being dragged out of a car at knifepoint. The witness also heard two gunshots. Responding officers couldn't locate anyone when they arrived about 9 p.m.


Less than an hour later, officers were dispatched to a domestic dispute in progress in southeast Rochester. Dispatchers taking the 911 call heard a male voice say "I'm going to kill you" and then the line disconnected. Officers found a 17-year-old girl at the home, crying. She had a red mark on her neck and cheek, the complaint says.

The girl told officers that she had gone to a movie with some friends and that Russell, her ex-boyfriend, showed up. She said he was jealous because she was there with another guy. She said she and her friends left and were stopped at a red light at 37th Street and Broadway when Russell pulled up behind them and got out of his vehicle. She said he grabbed her, pulled her from the car and forced her into his car. She said he had a knife in his hand. The girl said one of her friends shot at Russell's car.

She said Russell drove to her residence and went to her bedroom. She said he refused to leave. She said when she tried to leave, he threw her onto the bed. She convinced him she wanted to call 911 to report the shooting. He allowed her to make the call, but she said he grabbed the phone when she said she wanted help.

The girl said Russell hit her in the leg and pushed her in the chest, according to the complaint.

Police also arrested a 17-year-old boy who allegedly fired two shots at Russell's car. No charges had been filed against him as of Monday.

Russell has prior convictions for sexual misconduct, making terroristic threats and fleeing police officers. In 1996, he was sentenced to a year in jail for having sexual relations with a juvenile girl knowing she was a minor. In 1997, he was sentenced to nine months in jail for threatening to hit another man with a baseball bat. A month later, he was arrested for fleeing officers and crashing into a light pole.

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