mother accused of helping her two teenage daughters run away from their
Lakeville home continues to be held on $1 million bail after a hearing Monday
where her attorney urged a judge to set her free.
Grazzini-Rucki was arrested on Oct. 18 at a Florida resort and spa on three
charges of felony deprivation of parental rights. Her daughters, Gianna and
Samantha, were 13 and 14 when they ran away from their Lakeville home in April
to Minnesota last week, Grazzini-Rucki, 50, had a bail hearing on Friday, after
being extradited on Thursday, but her attorney, Michelle MacDonald, was not
Karen Asphaug lifted the bail, and then gave each side a new chance to argue
their case.
Phil Prokopowicz again asked for $1 million bail. He acknowledged the large
amount, given the charges, but argued that it took nine weeks for federal
authorities to find Grazzini-Rucki, that she has ID cards in two states, and
that she uses prepaid cellphones to avoid being tracked.
who has been named by Lakeville police as “a person of interest” in the case of
the missing girls, argued that Grazzini-Rucki should be released on her own
said her client was homeless, and offered that if she was released she would
live with her.
set the bail at $1 million, agreeing with Prokopowicz that Grazzini-Rucki
presents a flight risk. She can also be released if she pays a $650,000 bail,
but with restrictions, such as home monitoring.
next hearing has been set for Nov. 30, at which MacDonald said she will argue
that charges should be dismissed.
sisters ran from their home while their parents were in the midst of a bitter
custody dispute over their five children. The girls had accused their father of
abusing them, but a court-appointed psychologist concluded that Grazzini-Rucki
had turned her children against their father. A Dakota County judge granted the
father full custody of his children in November 2013, saying there was no
credible evidence that they were abused.
Brandon Stahl • 612-673-4626