Minnesota Lawmaker and Moms Demand Action Ally Arrested on Burglary Charges

Becker County Jail

A top legislative ally of Moms Demand Action and other gun control groups is now facing burglary charges after she was caught by a homeowner breaking into a residence early Monday morning. 


Detroit Lakes Police Chief Steve Todd says dispatchers received a 911 call around 4:45 a.m. on Monday morning, with a resident reporting “an active burglary in process at her residence". When officers arrived and searched the home, they found Democratic Sen. Nicole Mitchell and took her into custody. At last report Mitchell remains in the Becker County Jail on suspicion of first-degree burglary, and formal charges are expected to be filed later today. 

Public records and an obituary posted by a Detroit Lakes funeral home show that Mitchell’s father, who died last month, and stepmother lived on the same block of the same road in Detroit Lakes as where the senator was arrested. The stepmother did not immediately return a call seeking comment. 

Mitchell's arrest took Senate leaders by surprise. The Senate Democratic Caucus said in a statement that it's "aware of the situation and has no comment pending further information.”

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mark Johnson, of East Grand Forks, said he was shocked but knew very few details.

“The public expects Legislators to meet a high standard of conduct,” Johnson said in a statement. "As information comes out, we expect the consequences to meet the actions, both in the court of law, and in her role at the legislature.”

So far Moms Demand Action hasn't commented on the arrest of one of their favorite lawmakers, who posed for pictures with anti-gun activists last week. 


Mitchell has been a staunch supporter of gun control since she took office in 2022, including pushing for a "red flag" law and storage mandates for gun owners that would make it more difficult for them to access their guns for self-defense when needed. I guess that makes sense. I mean, if you're (allegedly) going to break into someone's home in the middle of the night, you don't want to worry about any of the folks inside having a gun they can use for self-defense, right? 

While the news is another embarrassment for the anti-gunners in Minnesota, Mitchell's arrest could also have major implications for the rest of this year's session. 

Mitchell did not immediately return a call left on the jail’s voicemail system for inmates. It’s not clear if she has an attorney who could comment on her behalf. The police chief said he didn’t know of one.

Mitchell was arrested while the Senate is on its Passover break. Her arrest comes at an awkward time for Senate Democrats, who hold just a one-seat majority with four weeks left in the legislative session. Her absence would make it difficult to pass any legislation that lacks bipartisan support.

I doubt that Mitchell is going to be held without bond for the next month, but will she actually return to the legislature? Ordinarily, I'd say she's going to face pressure from within her caucus to step down, but since that would leave the Senate deadlocked I suspect her DFL colleagues will grit their teeth and rally around her... at least until the session gavels to a close. Ironically, if she does return to the state Senate, she could end up being the deciding vote on a gun storage bill that's set for a House hearing tomorrow. 


If nothing else, Mitchell's arrest provided her colleagues with a timely reminder that burglaries and break-ins are real events that happen to real people. The victims of these crimes have every right to protect themselves and their families without a government-imposed storage mandate hindering their ability to quickly access a firearm, no matter how loudly lawmakers like Mitchell demand action. 

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