Accused of rape, a 20-year-old Iron Range man was decapitated with a machete by the woman’s boyfriend, according to authorities.
David A. Haiman, of Hibbing, was killed last week in an ambush attack along a northern Minnesota road, his body left in one spot in the woods and his head dumped in another location, according to the criminal complaint filed Tuesday in Itasca County District Court.
Joseph C. Thoresen, 35, of Grand Rapids, Minn., is charged with second-degree murder. Before his arrest, Thoresen said he hadn’t been in touch with Haiman for the past two to three weeks, but the defendant’s cellphone revealed texts shortly before Haiman’s death.
According to the criminal complaint:
Thoresen’s girlfriend told authorities that Thoresen was upset when she revealed to him that Haiman had raped her in the couple’s apartment.
Haiman arrived at the apartment on June 21 or 22, and she confronted him in front of Thoresen, punching and kicking him. Thoresen also punched Haiman and said he should not have raped “my girl.”
The three left in Haiman’s vehicle and smoked marijuana in Deer River with other people and then smoked methamphetamine with a friend.
From there, they “drove around in the woods” near Ball Club and later stopped. Thoresen and Haiman were standing in front of the vehicle, when Thoresen hit Haiman with a baseball bat, and stabbed him in the back and abdomen.
Thoresen then took the machete, decapitated Haiman and threw the head in the woods.
Authorities located Haiman’s torso Sunday morning and his head about an hour later, both not far from where the decapitation occurred.
Haiman’s Facebook page listed him as an employee at an education and employment center in Hibbing and as having attended Cherry School and Northern Lights Community School. He also listed Thoresen on his Facebook page among his friends.
Haiman first came to the attention of authorities early last week when he failed to show up for work and was reporting missing, as was his vehicle.
After Haiman’s death, the vehicle was spotted late Friday night in Deer River, with an obstructed license plate and Thoresen in the passenger seat without a seat belt on, the complaint against Thoresen read.
Just as the Deer River officer was about to pull over the vehicle, the driver took off but was caught several miles later. Thoresen was briefly detained at the scene.
The driver, identified only by initials in the complaint, told the officer that Thoresen was threatening him with a knife during the pursuit and ordered him not to stop. The driver also revealed that Thoresen confessed to decapitating Haiman and stealing the dead man’s vehicle, according to the charging document.
Thoresen’s criminal history in Minnesota includes only minor offenses, including two misdemeanor convictions for disorderly conduct.