Minnetonka man will not face charges in shooting death

A Minnetonka man will not face charges, after shooting a man at a storage facility this summer.

Jim Lacount, 65, said he was defending himself when he shot and killed 58-year-old Thomas E. Luetzow.

Police were called to Public Storage on Hedberg Drive around 11 a.m. June 23 on reports of a dispute. Police say they were on their way to the scene when they received reports of shots fired.

“I need a car out here now. I’m scared,” LaCount recalled telling the 911 operator.

He says shortly after calling police, Luetzow lunged at him. Before he knew it, he was on his back unconscious with Luetzow on top of him, gouging his eye out.

“I never thought I’d have to kill somebody,” said LaCount.  “I never thought I would be put in a situation where that would happen.”

According to Matt Higgins, a spokesperson for the city of Minnetonka, LaCount was released shortly after being booked into the Hennepin County Jail, pending a case review by the county attorney’s office.

This week, the Hennepin County Attorney’s office declined to charge LaCount.

“It’s a relief,” said LaCount. “You always hear of someone being arrested and convicted even though they are innocent—there’s always that in the back of your mind.”

According to court records, Luetzow has a history of assault and disorderly conduct. In separate incidents, he assaulted neighbors in his apartment building after complaining that they were “too loud.”

In December 2011, Luetzow assaulted a man because he was doing laundry early in the morning and Luetzow claimed the noise woke him up.

In an altercation with a different neighbor in 2016, he kicked the victim in the face after complaining about the noise from his roller suitcases coming down the hall.