Jurors acquit 30-year-old predatory offender of grabbing woman off Minneapolis porch, raping her

Paul Walsh, Star Tribune
·2 min read

Jurors have acquitted a 30-year-old predatory offender of rape after being accused of grabbing a woman from her Minneapolis front porch last summer and assaulting her.

Tyree T. Johnson, of Crystal, was found not guilty by a Hennepin County District Court jury last week of two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and kidnapping.

Jurors did convict Johnson of misdemeanor assault. He is scheduled to be sentenced on March 11.

Johnson's accuser said she Johnson grabbed her from the front port of her home in the 300 block of N. Newton Avenue and dragged nearly a quarter-mile to a church parking lot, where the rape allegedly occurred.

However, surveillance video from a nearby building shown during the trial showed the woman walking from her porch and returning about 45 minutes later.

The woman did have facial injuries, and those were evidence behind the misdemeanor assault count that resulted in a guilty verdict.

At the time of the encounter, Johnson was under intensive court-supervised release and registered with the state as a predatory offender following his conviction in Hennepin County adult court for a rape when he was 15 years old. He was sentenced to a nearly 16-year term, a length above state guidelines, and served more than 10 years in prison.

This is at least the third case against Johnson that has gone to trial and resulted in acquittal on most or all counts.

In December 2018, Johnson was charged with murder in the shooting that October of 54-year-old Darren P. Watkins in a north Minneapolis alley. However, Johnson was acquitted in July 2019 of second-degree murder and two related misdemeanor counts.

In December 2019, Johnson was accused of domestic assault by strangulation. He was charged with a felony and two misdemeanor counts. He was acquitted in April of the felony but found guilty of misdemeanor domestic assault.

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482