District attorney expects to rest case early this week in Apple River stabbing suspect trial

District attorney expects to rest case early this week in Apple River stabbing suspect trial

District attorney expects to rest case early this week in Apple River stabbing suspect trial

Several dozen witnesses have come before a St. Croix County, Wis. jury in the Apple River stabbings case in the last week.

RELATED: Day 5 of trial of Nicolae Miu for deadly stabbing on Apple River

Nicolae Miu, 54, from Prior Lake, Minn., is facing homicide, attempted homicide and battery charges stemming from the incident, which killed 17-year-old Isaac Schuman and hurt four others in Somerset, Wisconsin.

Miu pleaded not guilty to the charges.

St. Croix County District Attorney Karl Anderson indicated that the state could finish presenting evidence on Monday or possibly Tuesday.

During opening statements, Miu’s defense team told the jury, “…he (Miu) told the police, and he’ll tell you… he feared for his life.”

Will Miu be one of the witnesses the defense plans to call to the stand this week?

Eric Nelson, a Twin Cities criminal defense attorney, isn’t connected to the case but has been following the trial.

“Generally speaking, it’s ultimately and always the client’s decision,” Nelson said. “But really in certain cases where the defendant’s intent, or the defendant’s mindset come into play, it’s going to be more likely that a defendant would testify.”

Nelson doesn’t expect the defense to call a lot of witnesses beyond Miu.

“I think that the defense has done a lot already in terms of using the witnesses to kind of get some of his story out,” Nelson said. “I think what you are going to see primarily is going to be Mr. Miu, maybe some character-type witnesses.”

A cell phone video from July 30, 2022 captured Miu, age 52 at the time, in what appeared to be an argument with tubers on the Apple River, according to prosecutors.

A teen testified that Miu commented about “looking for little girls,” which led the group of teens to yell at him.

Miu’s defense team disputed that allegation, instead saying he had a pair of goggles with him to look for a lost cell phone in the water when the teens began yelling at him.

A different group of adult tubers have also testified during the trial, saying they stopped their tubes after hearing the commotion.

Prosecutors showed the jury an image from the video that showed Miu holding a knife, standing by two women. One of the women was yelling at Miu to leave, according to testimony.

Moments later, witnesses testified Miu pushed or punched one of the women. The video goes on to show Miu pushed into the water by other people.

When it was over, 17-year-old Isaac Schuman was fatally stabbed, and four adults were also stabbed, according to investigators.

“Nic responded, he defended himself,” said one of Miu’s friends, Ariel Chaguez, while on the stand Friday.

Miu was with a group of friends and his wife tubing that day on the river.

Law enforcement body camera video played for the jury shows Miu was later taken into custody downstream from the scene, where tubers exit the Apple River.

RELATED: Bodycam video shows law enforcement taking Apple River stabbing suspect into custody

The jury was played a clip by prosecutors that showed Miu speaking with St. Croix County Sheriff Scott Knudson while seated in the back of a squad vehicle.

“I hear somebody got stabbed, and I fit the description,” Miu told the sheriff in the video.

“Yes, you do,” said Sheriff Knudson.

Testimony continues Monday at 8 a.m. from the St. Croix County Courthouse in Hudson.


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