A jury found a Redwood Falls man guilty on Friday of choking and attempting to drown a man in an assault last August. Aaron Morris Swenson, 32, was found guilty for choking, threatening to stab, and attempting to drown the victim on the Lower Sioux Indian Community on August 20, 2020.
According to the criminal complaint and testimony at trial, the Lower Sioux Police Department received a 911 call around 8:30 p.m. stating Swenson was involved in a fight at Indian Rock on the Minnesota River. When officers arrived, they found Swenson at the top of the embankment, soaking wet.
The victim was at the bottom of the embankment on the shore of the river, soaking wet, on his hands and knees in visible pain. The victim told officers Swenson had held him in a choke hold in the river until he passed out. The victim said he regained consciousness when Swenson threw him on the rocky shoreline.
The victim claimed Swenson then assaulted him a second time, threatening him with a knife, and telling him to choose to get back in the river or get stabbed. The victim chose to back in the river wearing a sweatshirt, jeans, and steel toed boots. Swenson held him around his neck under the water, only releasing him and throwing him back on shore when Swenson heard law enforcement arriving after an eyewitness called 911.
A Redwood County District Court jury found a Swenson guilty on Friday of one count of Assault in the First Degree, one count of Assault in the Second Degree, one count of Assault in the Third Degree and one count of Assault in the Fifth Degree, County Attorney Jenna Peterson announced Tuesday. The jury deliberated for approximately one hour on Friday, March 12th, before delivering the guilty verdicts around 11:45 a.m.
Swenson will be sentenced April 12th at the Redwood County Courthouse.