Man charged in Mankato police chase, stabbing girlfriend 36 times

A 33-year-old man faces multiple felony charges for allegedly stabbing his girlfriend 36 times and leading law enforcement on a chase in Mankato which ended with an officer ramming into his vehicle. 

Dustin Lee Murilla, 33, was charged with one count each of attempted premeditated first-degree murder, attempted second-degree murder with intent, kidnapping, first-degree assault, and fleeing police officers in a vehicle in connection to the incident on May 30. 

According to court records, a 911 caller alerted authorities about a driver in Mankato who was running red lights and stop signs, and the caller suspected the driver may have been under the influence.

Shortly before the call, officers from the Mankato Department of Public Safety had responded to a residence where they spoke with Murilla’s sister. The sister claimed Murilla and his girlfriend were using methamphetamine and Murilla started assaulting her before leaving in a vehicle, charges allege.

The sister described Murilla as driving "crazy" and that he drove on the sidewalk past his house. The girlfriend’s cousin also contacted police saying she was on the phone with the victim, who informed her that Murilla was driving on sidewalks, through yards and assaulting her in the vehicle, charges said. 

Officers located Murilla’s vehicle and initiated a pursuit. He was driving erratically and at high speeds, so law enforcement attempted to deploy a spike strip, but Murilla swerved and officers were told to terminate the pursuit, charges said. 

Shortly afterward, the Minnesota State Patrol dispatch called Blue Earth County dispatch to say they had an open line inside Murilla’s vehicle and provided updates on their location. An officer found Murilla driving through several yards in a neighborhood. Eventually, Murilla ended up on a dead-end street and a commanding officer instructed officers to "take out" the vehicle, charges read. An officer used his squad car and rammed into the vehicle causing it to flip over and come to a stop. 

The woman managed to exit the vehicle and collapsed outside. Police said she was covered in blood and had cuts on her face and head. The officers observed she was losing a lot of blood and had stopped responding to questions. 

An officer carried her approximately one block from the scene where an ambulance was waiting. The woman sustained approximately 36 stab wounds, six of which were life-threatening, charges say. As of Thursday, she remains in the Intensive Care Unit at the hospital. 

An agent with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), who assisted in the case, said the woman’s injuries were sustained after the vehicle flipped over. A bloody knife was located inside the vehicle and there was blood on the ceiling of the car, charges detailed.

The BCA said Murilla was hospitalized but has since been released and taken into custody. The officer who rammed into his vehicle suffered minor injuries. 

Murilla appeared in court Friday morning and the judge set his bail at $1 million with conditions or $2.5 million without conditions. Prosecutors filed a notice to seek an aggravated sentence given his history of violent crime, which dates back to when he was 16 years old. He was also convicted in 2012 of second-degree attempted murder and was sentenced to serve 183 months (15.25 years) at St. Cloud correctional facility.