Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom announced that Lucifer Vincent Nguyen, age 44, of New Hope has been charged* with Murder in the Second Degree (Intentional); two counts of Aggravated Robbery in the First Degree; one count of Burglary in the First Degree and one count of Kidnapping, in connection with a home invasion armed robbery, entry into a senior care facility and office building while fleeing from the police and the murder of an employee of one of the businesses located in the office building which occurred on July 29, 2017 in Mendota Heights.
A summary of the allegations in the complaint includes:
On July 29, 2017, at 9 a.m. Mendota Heights Police officers were dispatched to a Mendota Heights home on the report of a home invasion by a male armed with a pistol. The home owner told police that an individual, later identified as Lucifer Vincent Nguyen, knocked on her door inquiring if this was the "Miller" residence. When told it was not, the male got into his parked car which was in the front of the residence and drove away. Shortly thereafter, while in the master bedroom with her grandchild, Nguyen entered the room, pulled out a handgun and demanded cash. Nguyen took cash that she had in the residence and the victim’s wallet, left the home and drove away in a white Toyota with the partial plate number 922.
While responding to the home invasion report, Mendota Heights officers observed the suspect vehicle and attempted to initiate a stop thereof. After initially pulling over, the vehicle fled the scene at a high rate of speed. The vehicle subsequently crashed and landed in a pond. When officers arrived no one was in the vehicle. During a subsequent search of the vehicle officers found the victim’s wallet and items tying the car to Nguyen. A witness told police they saw a man run from the scene of the crash.
Shortly, thereafter at 9:07 a.m., officers were dispatched to a senior care facility near the crash site on a report of an adult male armed with a pistol having forced his way inside the building. One of the employees of the senior care facility told police a male with a gun, who she later identified as Nguyen, forced her into a laundry room and took her work keys. While residents were being evacuated from the senior care facility, officers received a report there was suspected blood seeping underneath a door in a suite in an adjacent office building. Tactical officers entered the building and found Beverly Cory, age 48 of Maplewood, deceased on the floor inside the suite. An autopsy of Ms. Cory determined that she died from a single gunshot wound to the head.
While investigating the death scene, it was determined that Ms. Cory’s vehicle was missing from the building’s parking lot. Her vehicle was located on July 30, 2017 at the Washington County Fairgrounds. Investigating officers were told by an adult male living near the Fairgrounds that he was approached on July 29, 2017 at approximately 11 a.m. by a man matching the description of Nguyen and requesting a ride to a nearby casino. The homeowner declined to give him a ride. It was later determined that Nguyen purchased a cell phone at 1:30 p.m. on July 29, 2017 at the Oak Parks Walmart store located approximately 3 miles from the Fairgrounds.
Backstrom said that Nguyen remains at large and is considered to be armed and dangerous. Anyone with knowledge of his whereabouts is asked to call 911 immediately. Anyone with any other information pertaining to this investigation should call: 651-438-8477.
On behalf of everyone involved in the investigation and prosecution of this case, Backstrom expressed his deep sympathy to the family, friends and co-workers of Beverly Cory for their great loss.
Additional facts pertaining to this case can be found in the criminal complaint which is available online at: Criminal Complaint Search.
Backstrom thanked the Dakota County Sheriff’s Office, which is leading this investigation, the Mendota Heights Police Department, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Marshal’s Office and all other law enforcement agencies that have assisted in this investigation and search for the Defendant.
If you have questions, contact James Backstrom at 651-438-4438.
*Criminal charges are not evidence of guilt. A defendant/suspect is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.