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Crime Notes: Wally The Beer Man Trial Update

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By Caroline Lowe, WCCO-TV

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Wally the Beer Man’s case is now in the hands of a Hennepin County jury.

Four women and two men will decide if Wally McNeil and vendor Ed Stepnik are guilty of gross misdemeanor crimes for selling beer to underage police decoys in a sting last Sept. 30 at Target Field. There was no verdict on Monday, and jury deliberations are expected to resume Tuesday morning.

Their attorneys are arguing they were entrapped by police and plan to bring out the fact the police supervisor for the sting has been fired from the Minneapolis Police Department for allegedly lying in an unrelated case.

Last week a police supervisor said he couldn’t comment on the case because he is on the list of officers subpoenaed to possibly testify at the trial. But Lt. Chris Hildreth said officers played by the rules in the handling of the sting at Target Field.

Minneapolis city prosecutor Judd Gushwa told jury the vendors were chosen at random for the police sting and that Wally was not singled out as a target.

“They were not tricked. They were not coerced. They did it freely and voluntarily,” said Gushwa.

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