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Heart Transplant Teen Plotted To Cut Out Man's Heart

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STILLWATER, Minn. (CBS/AP) The plot was heartless. A teenage boy, who had received a heart transplant, plotted to cut out another man's heart and kill him.

On Monday, a Washington County District court sentenced Andrew Busskohl, 19, to 90 days in the county jail, with seven suspended, and gave him four years' probation.

In April, Busskohl pleaded guilty to two gross misdemeanors — one for aggravated harassment and another for damage to property — related to his threat to kill Jim Fratto as he slept and then cut out his heart and eyelids. They both live in the same neighborhood.

Busskohl's attorney told the court that his client hadn't been treated psychologically after he received a heart transplant when he was 14.

"As a result of that Mr. Busskohl had some very bizarre thoughts that he acted on," said attorney John Lucas. "It's hard for him to explain where these thoughts came from but they're not there anymore."

In court Monday, Busskohl spoke to the judge. "I do understand that what I've done is wrong and extremely scary," he said. "I would like to apologize for all that I've done."

One condition of the sentence is that a psychiatrist produce a complete assessment of Busskohl's capacity to commit similar crimes.

Prosecutor John Fristik read a statement from the victim in court, in which Fratto wrote that because of the threats he can't sleep and seals himself in his bedroom at night. Residents in their neighborhood fear Busskohl will harm somebody.

"Andrew's plan to attack an innocent person when they are most vulnerable is most disturbing to us," Fratto wrote. "For me this was a terroristic attack on my life and Andrew needs to be disciplined so he never does this again."

Authorities claim Busskohl took the first step in his plot on Aug. 6 by smashing the man's patio window around 1:30 a.m. He allegedly planned to return a day or two later, enter through the broken window and finish the job.

The criminal complaint says a friend of Busskohl's called police the same day and said Busskohl had come up with a plan to find a man who lived by himself and kill him. He allegedly told his friend he'd wear a swim cap, latex gloves and shoe coverings.

Investigators later searched Busskohl's car and found a backpack containing a swim cap, latex gloves, shoe-coverings, a map to Fratto's house and a small pry bar. They also found tweezers, two pairs of scissors and a scalpel.

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