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Rochester teenager sentenced for shooting his father

Colby James Cleveland, 19, was sentenced in Olmsted County District Court by Judge Carmaine Sturino to 36 months in state prison.

Gavel court crime stock

ROCHESTER — A Rochester teenager charged with shooting his father in March 2021 was sentenced Monday, Jan. 10, 2022, to three years in state prison.

Colby James Cleveland, 19, was given the 36-month sentence in Olmsted County District Court by Judge Carmaine Sturino. Cleveland pleaded guilty in November to second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon. A charge of second-degree attempted murder was dismissed at sentencing. He will receive credit for 294 days he has already served.

Rochester police were called just after 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 19, 2021, to Essex Park Apartments, 1027 41st St. NW, for a report of a shooting.

Officers followed a trail of blood to an apartment where they found a 49-year-old man standing in the doorway and bleeding heavily from his left leg, according to the criminal complaint. The man identified Cleveland as his son and the shooter. Cleveland was not at the apartment complex when officers arrived. A warrant was issued for his arrest and he turned himself in to law enforcement less than a week after the incident. Cleveland has been held at the Olmsted County Adult Detention Center on $500,000 conditional bail since March 24, 2021.

No victim impact statement was provided to the court.

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Speaking on his own behalf Monday afternoon, Cleveland told the court he has been taking an interpersonal violence course and has already put the skills into practice and removed himself from a situation that could have escalated into violence. His attorney, Richard Kimlinger, requested Cleveland be sentenced to probation, but because a firearm was used in the incident, there is a mandatory prison sentence.

In handing down the 36-month sentence, Sturino told Cleveland that prison did not mean the end.

"You are young," she said. "There is a lot ahead for you if you wish to make it yours."

Emily Cutts is the Post Bulletin's public safety reporter. She joined the Post Bulletin in July 2018 after stints in Vermont and Western Massachusetts.
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