MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A 38-year-old West St. Paul man now faces a murder charge in connection to a fatal stabbing at a state-run mental health residence in the Twin Cities.

David Rahn, 68, died early Monday morning of multiple sharp force injuries, the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office says. His manner of death was listed as a homicide.

On Wednesday, John C Adams II was charged with second-degree murder with intent, but not premeditated, in connection to the Feb. 17 incident.

John C Adams II (credit: Dakota County)


According to the criminal complaint, officers were dispatched at 3:51 a.m. on the report of a disturbance at the West St. Paul group home, which is operated by the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

The reporting party, a staff member, said she heard Rahn screaming for help and when she responded to his room, she was blocked by someone who told the staff member that “it was okay.” She then called 911. While on the phone, the staff member said it went quiet in Rahn’s room and “something isn’t right.”

While arriving at the scene, officers observed a man, later determined to be Adams, running from a place of worship across the street from the group home and then entering the group home.

Officers then entered the group home and found Rahn in his room unresponsive and not breathing, suffering from multiple stab wounds. Life-saving measures were performed by officers and subsequently medics, but attempts to revive Rahn were not successful and he was declared deceased at the scene.

While attempts were made to save Rahn’s life, officers made contact with Adams, who is a resident at the group home. Adams told police that Rahn “busted into his room” and attacked him. He said they started wrestling, and at some point he ran and got a knife to defend himself. Then, he went to Rahn’s room and claimed Rahn was still attacking, so he defended himself, the complaint said.

In a later interview, Adams told police that Rahn beckoned Adams to come into his room at around 1:30 a.m. Adams said Rahn then told him that he had nothing to live for and began stabbing himself. Adams said he tried to stop him but Rahn was a “very strong man” and he feared Rahn would attack him, so he balled up in the corner of the room. He said he waited for Rahn to run out of strength, grabbed the knife, went to the place of worship across the street and cried.

An autopsy was performed on Rahn’s body and it was determined that he suffered a least 20 sharp force injuries to one of his hands, which is consistent with defensive wounds. He also suffered sharp force injuries to his face, neck, upper body and upper extremities. He also had blunt force trauma to his head.

A badly bent serrated kitchen knife with apparent blood on it was found in the garbage at the place of worship across the street from the group home.

Adams made his first appearance in court Wednesday morning and bail was set at $1.5 million without conditions and $1 million with conditions. His next court appearance is slated for March 16 in Hastings.

If convicted, Adams could face up to 40 years in prison.

Officials with the Minnesota Department of Human Services, which runs the group home, say this type of violence is “extraordinarily unusual” at agency facilities. The department says it’s undertaking a review of the attack and making sure that the home’s other residents get the care they need.

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