Isanti man charged with murder of Amanda Jo Vangrinsven

Amanda Jo Vangrinsven, 32, went missing after she left Isanti VFW on Aug. 5 with a man. Her body was found buried on a rural property several days later.  (Isanti  / FOX 9)

An Isanti man is now charged with the murder of 32-year-old Amanda Jo Vangrinsven after her body was found buried on his property last week. He was the last person to be seen with her the night she went missing. 

Richard Melvin Peterson II, 37, of Isanti was charged Thursday with second-degree murder with intent in Vangrinsven's death. He is listed as the Vice Commander of the Isanti VFW, where Vangrinsven worked. 

On Aug. 5, Vangrinsven was drinking at the Isanti VFW with Peterson. Her coworkers who were working that night told police she was intoxicated and they had cut her off from drinking more, according to the court documents. Peterson offered to give her a ride home, although the pair later returned to the VFW for a while. They eventually left the VFW to go to the Dugout Bar in Bethel. 

When Vangrinsven did not show up to work the following day, she was reported missing. Her vehicle was still in the VFW parking lot.

Five days later, on Aug. 10, investigators with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension executed a search warrant on Peterson's property and located Vangrinsven's body buried on the southeastern end, where Peterson's wife reported seeing him digging and moving dirt around with a small tractor the morning after Vangrinsven went missing. 

The Midwest Medical Examiner determined Vangrinsven died after being shot in the back of the head. Her death was ruled a homicide. 

Peterson was arrested on Tuesday. He made his first court appearance Thursday morning, where an Isanti County District Court judge set his bail at $3 million. Under the conditions for his bail, he is not allowed to leave the state without approval and will be under release supervision with GPS tracking. He is not allowed into the VFW in Isanti or the Dugout Bar in Bethel and is not allowed to have contact with Vangrinsven's family.