MINNEAPOLIS -- At least 11 people have been charged with misdemeanors after a series of protests at a metro area Menards store, one of which allegedly resulted in an assault. The protests came in the wake of the death of 19-year-old James Stanback in a forklift accident, and three of those charged were his siblings.
The charges state that Golden Valley officers were dispatched to the store on the 6800 block of Wayzata Boulevard on July 22.
Earlier that morning, Stanback had been killed when a pallet of lumber fell on the forklift he was operating. A representative for Menards told WCCO in July that Stanback was certified to operate a forklift, but his family said he had not been trained.
She and others went into the store upset that it did not close, and they demanded to see video of the incident.
Criminal complaints say that the crowd inside the store had been screaming, preventing customers from entering the store. The complaint also said that the crowd was throwing merchandise around.
Store employees told the crowd to leave the store multiple times, but they refused. Ultimately they were forcibly removed and some were detained.
Those facing disorderly conduct and trespassing charges in the July 22 incident are: 27-year-old Joan Carlos Rosas Dominguez, of Richfield; 22-year-old Alana Rose Donovan-Jester, of Annandale; 21-year-old Nevaeh Vanessa Hamilton, of North St. Paul; 19-year-old Derrick Lee Lind, of Minneapolis; 24-year-old Japrea April Stanback, of Minneapolis; 27-year-old Mystaya Joy Stanback, of Brooklyn Center; and 30-year-old Jimmyl Darrel Stanback, of Blaine.
Jimmyl Darrel Stanback also faces an additional charge of fourth-degree criminal damage to property, as the charges state video shows him jump onto a counter and kick a computer over.
Additional disorderly conduct and trespassing charges were filed against two people over a protest that happened the next day, after police say a group entered the store by breaking a door. Those charges were filed against 35-year-old Michael Warren Steffer, of Forest Lake, and 37-year-old Nyleve Eiram Hanf-Campbell, of St. Paul.
And two more people were charged with third-degree riot (a gross misdemeanor) and fifth-degree assault in connection with another disturbance that happened on July 28.
The complain says that about 15 people were blocking the fire lane and driveway at the same Menards, harassing customers trying to get to the store. Police were told that the protesters were assaulting an employee. The victim told investigators he had been punched by a woman, and then tackled by two men, who after he was on the ground began kicking. The two men are identified by the complaints as 21-year-old Miles Curtis Jackson, of Minneapolis, and 21-year-old Jarbbar Jones Jr., of Minneapolis.
Stanback's sister, Mystaya, says the charges aren't fair.
"For us to have, to be getting charges filed against us when we all are mourning and grieving, and we didn't come up there with no violent type of time. We came up there just wondering what happened," Stanback said. "We didn't want to start no violence. We didn't come up there terrorizing the store. We simply came up there like, 'How come you guys still open?'"
Following the death of James Stanback, Menards released a statement, saying in part: "We are a small family here at Golden Valley and we are all in shock. Our thoughts and prayers are with our Teammate and his family."
The Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration was working to determine the cause of the accident and fined Menards $25,000 earlier this year.
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