Rochester Man Pleads Guilty to Sending Threatening Email To Police Supervisor
Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) - A man is awaiting sentencing after recently pleading guilty to a criminal case involving a senior member of the Rochester Police Department.
Court records show the Rochester man has had frequent contact with RPD and Olmsted County Court over the past year.
Most of the contact has involved harassment complaints.
A total of nine harassment restraining orders (HRO) involving 37-year-old John Dewey Church were approved by judges between May 4 and July 6 last year. He was later charged with violating some of those orders which prohibited him from having any contact with the victims.
Church was also charged with a felony count of terroristic threats involving the police supervisor. According to the criminal complaint, that case had its origins in an email Church sent to RPD Chief Jim Franklin:
In the early part of 2021, Rochester Police Department Investigator Craig Jacobsen was investigating alleged violations of a Harassment Restraining Order involving Mr. Church. On June 3, 2021, Mr. Church sent an email to Rochester Police Department Chief Jim Franklin expressing his displeasure with the investigation.
Here is the email:
(CLICK TO ENLARGE)
According to court records, Jacobsen’s supervisor reviewed the email and responded. The supervisor later received a series of emails from Church over a period of several days. One indicated he knew where the supervisor lived. It also included a comment about going to the supervisor’s home while he was at work “to chat with the Mrs.”
While you’re at work tomorrow, I’ll be showing up to chat with the Mrs., grab your favorite guitar and serenade her until I (expletive omitted) her silly on your bed. Stop me (expletive omitted).
John D Church
That email led to the felony charge filed against Church.
After receiving the emails, the supervisor obtained an HRO against Church. His request for the order included this comment:
My family and I are extremely threatened and frightened by Church.
The order was approved the day after the request was filed, which was also the same day the criminal complaint was filed.
Church is scheduled to be sentenced in July after recently pleading guilty to five charges, including the case involving the officer.
Church is also facing a child pornography case that was filed against him last year. That case is based on evidence that was found during the investigation into some of the harassment complaints.