Bemidji Pioneer 

Man pleads guilty for role in robbery


Hunter Craig Pemberton, 19, of Cass Lake, pleaded guilty Wednesday to an amended charge of aiding and abetting robbery.

A jury trial, which was scheduled for today, has been canceled, according to Danna Farabee, victim assistance coordinator for the Beltrami County Attorney’s Office.

Pemberton was one of at least three individuals who were charged for their roles in a September 2011 robbery in Cass Lake.

Two victims were allegedly assaulted as they were kicked and struck by fists, a heavy flashlight and a crutch.

Justin Lyle Cutbank, 25, of Duluth, Minn., and Pemberton both were charged with first-degree aggravated robbery and robbery. Cutbank also was charged with fleeing police in a motor vehicle.

George Fineday III, 24, of Cass Lake, was charged with fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle and third-degree driving while impaired.

A fourth suspect, a juvenile, also was arrested in connection to the incident.

According to the criminal complaint:

Cutbank and Pemberton were driven by Fineday in the early morning Sept. 21, to a residence near Cass Lake. Two others were in the vehicle, including the juvenile and a 25-year-old man. Cutbank and Pemberton went to the door and were allowed into the residence by a female.

The duo approached a man sleeping on the couch, roused him and began threatening him. Pemberton punched him with a closed fist and kicked him. Cutbank took a heavy flashlight from near the couch and struck the male on the side of the head. The male, injured, fell to the ground.

The female who had let them in was using crutches to get around, but tried to intervene. Cutbank pushed her down and assaulted her with one of the crutches.

Court documents also state:

He and Pemberton then stole $60 cash, the heavy flashlight and other tools, before they left the home.

After receiving a 911 call from woman and obtaining a description of the vehicle, the Grand Prix was spotted at a nearby intersection. Fineday refused to pull over, but was eventually stopped along Mission Road Northeast. Fineday attempted to flee, but was arrested by Leech Lake and Beltrami County law enforcement.

Pemberton exited the vehicle and was arrested by a Minnesota State Patrol officer. As he was being arrested, Cutbank moved behind the wheel of the vehicle and drove away.

He drove the vehicle into a west ditch about 300 yards down the road and fled into the woods. He was not located.

Once at the Law Enforcement Center, Fineday registered a .18 blood-alcohol content.


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