Renville County defendant loses second appeal to reduce sentence

·1 min read

Jul. 19—OLIVIA

— A Renville County defendant has struck out for a second time in a bid to reduce his 72-month prison sentence.

The Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed a Renville County District Court ruling that denied Dane Michael Vandervoort, 36, what the District Court determined to be a petition for post-conviction relief.

As part of a plea agreement, Vandervoort pleaded guilty to three assault charges and was sentenced in October 2019 to serve three 36-month sentences, two of them consecutively and one concurrent.

The criminal charges against him alleged that he threatened "to take everyone to hell tonight" before brandishing a handgun at his ex-girlfriend and her friend before engaging in a life-and-death struggle with a police officer at a Fairfax residence in March 2019.

At sentencing, the District Court denied a motion by Vandervoort for a downward departure in the sentence that was part of the plea agreement. He appealed the denial, but the Court of Appeals affirmed the sentencing decision.

The District Court rejected this second appeal on procedural grounds. It determined that his arguments were known or should have been known at the time of the first direct appeal, and should have been raised at that time. The Court of Appeals affirmed that decision.

Vandervoort began serving his prison sentence on Oct. 15, 2019, and has an expected release date of March 16, 2023, according to the Minnesota Department of Corrections.