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Man previously sentenced for hit and run in Montecito involved in fatal hit and run in Minneapolis Friday night

Man paroled five years after Monticito crash is now a suspect in a crash that killed five women in Minneapolis

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – A Minnesota man who plead guilty in 2020 to injuring a woman while evading arrest in Montecito in 2018, is recovering after allegedly crashing into another vehicle while evading police in Minneapolis on Friday night resulting in the death of five people.

The man, Derrick John Thompson, is currently recovering from his injuries at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis after a foot chase following the crash.

The identities of all five people confirmed dead at the scene are: Sabiriin Ali, Sahra Gessade, Salma Abdikadir, Sagal Hersi, and Siham Adam according to a fundraiser through the Dar Al Farooq Center.

According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, two sources confirmed that Thompson was the driver of the vehicle and fled on foot to a nearby Taco Bell before being arrested by police.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune also details that Thompson, the son of a former member of the Minnesota House of Representatives, had an active driver's license that had been reinstated in March of 2023.

Thompson, was sentenced to eight years after entering a guilty plea in 2020 after being arrested for those crimes in St. Paul, Minnesota after a multi-state manhunt.

According to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Thompson was paroled on Jan. 19 of this year.

Santa Barbara County Senior Deputy District Attorney Kevin Weichbrod submitted the following statement in response to a request for comment on this story:

Mr. Thompson was sentenced on 2/7/2020 to 8 years in State Prison for violations of Vehicle Code section 2800.3, evading law enforcement causing injury, Vehicle Code section 20001(b)(1), fleeing from the scene of a collision causing serious permanent injury, and Penal Code section 182(a)(1) conspiracy to possess marijuana for sale, as well as an enhancement for personally causing great bodily injury causing a comatose condition pursuant Penal Code section 12022.7(b).

Mr. Thompson pled open to the Court, meaning that there was no plea agreement with the District Attorney’s Office.  The People argued at the time of sentencing for a 10 year State Prison sentence based on aggravating factors of the defendant’s conduct and subsequent flight and interstate extradition from Minnesota.

Mr. Thompson received 577 days credit (for the time he spent in custody pending disposition) at the time of sentencing.

Based on the fact that he was sentenced to a violent felony he would have been required to serve 85% of his time, meaning he would have had close to 5.5 years left to serve.

That being said, CA proposition 57 (passed in 2016) changed potential credits calculations and gave CDCR wide latitude in rewarding additional credits during an inmates time in custody, as well as early parole opportunities for youthful offenders.

After an interview with Santa Barbara County Senior Deputy District Attorney Kevin Weichbrod, the following quote was provided about how Thompson's prior conviction here in Santa Barbara County could impact his potential new charges.

"This case in Santa Barbara County, which was evading causing great bodily injury and fleeing the scene of a collision that caused great bodily injury. This could be used in the prosecution or potential prosecution of Mr. Thompson if he is in fact, charged with a crime in Minnesota. Sometimes we'll get notices from the Department of Corrections, which we can respond to, whether we're in favor or against an early parole for an individual."
"I can tell you that our victim witness advocates get victims in touch with the Department of Corrections to make sure that they're aware of somebody who's being paroled. So it is something that we monitor, but it's not something we necessarily have a say in."

Article Topic Follows: Santa Barbara - South County
crime and convictions
Santa Barbara

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Andrew Gillies

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