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Disbarment sought for Warren lawyer charged with killing his former wife

Laura Brown//August 17, 2023

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Disbarment sought for Warren lawyer charged with killing his former wife

Laura Brown//August 17, 2023

The Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility is seeking the disbarment of an attorney who is alleged to have murdered his ex-wife in front of his minor children last year. On Aug. 9,  Director Susan Humiston petitioned the Minnesota Supreme Court to disbar Anders Odegaard.

Anders Odegaard

Odegaard attended the University of North Dakota Law School. He was admitted to practice in North Dakota in May 2017. In February 2018, Odegaard was admitted to practice law in Minnesota. At one time, Odegaard was a prosecutor in North Dakota, working under Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem.

However, Odegaard was terminated as a prosecutor for cause. Things also began to unravel personally. His wife, Carissa, sought a divorce, which was finalized in 2021. Odegaard also owed over six figures in student loans.

Things took a tragic turn on August 23, 2022. That day, a man was flagged down by two children who claimed that their mother was badly bleeding and potentially deceased. After the man called 911, officers responded to Odegaard’s home in Warren, Minnesota. The children’s mother was unresponsive, had severe head trauma, and was bleeding profusely.

The children, who ranged in ages from 3 to 9, claimed that Odegaard beat their mother. Carissa would never recover. She had no significant brain function, and her family made the decision to take her off life support.

Odegaard was charged with two felony counts of murder in the second degree. On July 6, 2023, Odegaard entered an Alford plea to second degree murder without intent. Under the plea agreement, he would be sentenced to just under 20 years, though he would serve less time than that in prison.

However, media outlets including the Grand Forks Herald reported that Judge Corey Harbott on Tuesday withdrew his acceptance of the Alford plea after learning the victim’s family had not been notified about the plea agreement. That delays the sentencing, which had been scheduled for Tuesday, media reports said.

Currently, Odegaard is at the Pennington County Jail in Thief River Falls, where he awaits sentencing. He has 20 days to answer the allegations in the petition.

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