Sen. Nicole Mitchell burglary charges: 'I know I did something bad'

Nicole Mitchells booking photo (left) and her official Minnesota Senate portrait (right). (Supplied)

Charging documents released Tuesday say Sen. Nicole Mitchell claimed she was "just trying to get some of my dad’s things" while allegedly breaking into a house in Becker County. 

Mitchell, a Democratic senator representing Woodbury, Minnesota, was arrested Monday for a reported burglary. Court records say police responded to a house in Detroit Lakes around 4:45 a.m. and located Mitchell in the basement dressed in all black with a flashlight covered in a black sock nearby. 

Sen. Mitchell told police she had "just gotten into the house" and added, "Clearly I’m not good at this," charges read.  

Officers searched a black backpack that was stuck in a window and recovered two laptops, a cellphone, a driver’s license, Senate identification, and miscellaneous Tupperware, according to the complaint. 

While speaking with investigators, Sen. Mitchell claimed she entered the house to get items that belonged to her late father. Mitchell claimed the woman, identified as a non-blood relative, had stopped contacting her and refused to give her the items, such as pictures, a flannel shirt, ashes, and other sentimental items.   

"I was just trying to get a couple of my dad's things because you wouldn't talk to me anymore," Mitchell allegedly said at the time of the arrest. 

However, charges said one of the laptops found in the backpack belonged to the woman, who told investigators she did not give it to Mitchell, but the Senator said otherwise. 

Sen. Mitchell allegedly admitted to leaving Woodbury around 1 a.m. and driving to Becker County where she entered the house through the window. She was charged with first-degree burglary and is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday morning. 

Sen. Mitchell responds

In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Mitchell denied that she had entered the home to steal anything.

The post reads:

"Like so many families, mine is dealing with the pain of watching a loved one decline due to Alzheimer's and associated paranoia.

"Over the weekend, I learned of medical information which caused me grave concern and prompted me to check on that family member. I entered a home I have come and gone from countless times in the past 20 years, where my son even once had his own room.

"Unfortunately, I startled this close relative, exacerbating paranoia, and I was accused of stealing, which I absolutely deny.

"Thank you to all my friends (and colleagues of both parties) for the kind words of support and for trusting my character even before I had a chance to respond.

"This has been a true tragedy for our family and my hope is it can return to being a private matter."