Teen to be tried as adult in murder

WILLMAR -- The Willmar teenager accused in the July 20 murder of Adam Kenneth Milton, 21, of Willmar, will be prosecuted as an adult in Kandiyohi County District Court.

WILLMAR -- The Willmar teenager accused in the July 20 murder of Adam Kenneth Milton, 21, of Willmar, will be prosecuted as an adult in Kandiyohi County District Court.

In a court order dated Wednesday, District Judge Jon Stafsholt ordered that Miles David Edinburgh, now 18, be certified as an adult on the second-degree murder charge.

Edinburgh was 17 at the time of the stabbing of the Ridgewater College student and football player.

Milton suffered two stab wounds to the chest during a scuffle and died after he was taken to Rice Memorial Hospital in Willmar.

In his findings of fact, Stafsholt noted that "the victim was stabbed two times, with the juvenile driving the knife into the victim as far as the blade would allow.


The seriousness of this offense ... is heightened when the fact that Mr. Milton was unarmed and the juvenile had knowledge of this fact."

Another finding of fact notes that the autopsy performed on Milton showed one of the stab wounds, into the left chest, "penetrated approximately four and three quarters inches into Mr. Milton, penetrating the left lung, the pericardial sac, and ultimately the heart, causing his death."

Officers found a foldable knife with a 3½-inch blade during a subsequent search of the northwest Willmar neighborhood. The order also notes that Edinburgh had a reputation for carrying a knife, which along with the violence of the murder, makes him "a serious risk to the community without proper programming and treatment."

Attorneys for Edinburgh indicated at the Sept. 15 certification hearing that he would be asserting self-defense.

The order also outlines that Edinburgh has a "rather extensive criminal history of minor offenses" and that his first scrape with the law, a petty misdemeanor theft, was in July 2004, when he was 13. His first felony juvenile adjudication came in October 2004, on a theft charge. He was required to attend school and do community service in both cases. He's also been adjudicated delinquent on disorderly conduct, shoplifting, receiving stolen property and driving without a valid license and has a pending case of disorderly conduct. None of those cases are public records.

However, a felony charge for possessing a knife and using it to injure another boy at Willmar High School was dismissed in June 2007.

According to the petition filed July 22 in the murder case, police were called around 12:50 a.m. July 20 to the Evergreen Ridge Apartment complex, along the 1300 block of 24th Street Northwest. They found a group of people around Milton, began first aid and called for an ambulance. His shirt and shorts were covered in blood. Another man pointed out two stab wounds on Milton's chest and assisted with the first aid administration. Milton appeared semi-conscious and was making labored breathing noises. He was transported to Rice Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1:44 a.m.

Police interviewed a number of young adults and juveniles who said Edinburgh and another 17-year-old had fled the scene. Officers conducted a search and discovered Edinburgh hiding under a car in a driveway along the 2700 block of 12th Avenue Northwest. The other teen was found in the Sunwood Apartments building. Both teens were arrested and taken to the Prairie Lakes juvenile detention center. The other teen has since been released.


A group of men told officers they were at an apartment, heard a knock at the door and opened it to find three men. They told the group to leave, but one of them, later identified as Edinburgh, hung around a vehicle in the parking lot. The men told the teen to leave, and punches and racial slurs were exchanged. Edinburgh then fled, with Milton in pursuit.

Milton and Edinburgh were "scrapping," when Milton fell to the ground. A witness told police Milton said "he poked me with something" before he saw the blood and called police.

Investigators combed the area and found shoes, believed to be Edinburgh's, and a cell phone in a nearby backyard. Officers located a brushed stainless steel knife with a wood grip protruding from the ground near a group of trees around 8 a.m.

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