Murder plotter convicted of assault, burglary

Published 10:30 am Monday, May 20, 2013

A Kenyon man sentenced to more than 13 years in prison earlier this month for conspiracy to commit murder has been convicted in a previous case in Mower County.

Jesse Allen Helgeson, 27, was convicted Friday in Mower County court for first-degree burglary and second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon. He will continue to serve his 161-month-and-15-day prison sentence from Rice Count Court for a plot to hire a person to kill his targeted victim.

Helgeson admitted he was guilty of felony conspiracy to commit first-degree murder in April. A second, similar charge was dropped. Helgeson reportedly sent a man several text messages in April 2012 in regard to killing his assault victim, one of which said, “Yea I have a plan but dunno if it will work.”

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Detectives then listened to a 38-minute phone call between Helgeson and the man he wanted to arrange the murder, according to the complaint. Recordings caught things like, “I want him worse than beat up. … Like not breathing,” and “I need this done.”

An undercover officer exchanged text messages with Helgeson about how to arrange the killing and later met with Helgeson in Northfield, posing as the man who was going to kill the victim, the complaint states.

Helgeson allegedly discussed killing the victim, how to make it look like a drug deal gone bad and payment for the job in the form of a golf cart and ATV. The officer allegedly asked Helgeson several times if he was sure he wanted the victim dead.

Officers then arranged to meet with Helgeson on May 14, 2012, about the payment, went to Helgeson’s house, arrested him and put his child into protective custody.

Helgeson pleaded guilty in his assault case in Mower County Court several weeks ago. In that Jan 6, 2012, case, police say Helgeson went to the 800 block of Ninth Avenue Northwest in Austin and assaulted his ex-girlfriends’ boyfriend. Helgeson allegedly jumped on top of the man and hit him over the head several times with the flashlight. He was later arrested in Dexter.