Two Children Won’t Testify in Munt Case 08 Sep 11

Only one of three children who were with their mother when she was shot and killed in Mankato will be allowed to testify at the trial next week. Joel Marvin Munt goes on trial for first-degree murder charges in the killing of Svetlana Munt in the Rasmussen Woods parking lot 18 months ago. District Court Judge Kurt Johnson ruled Tuesday that if the boy is called as a witness, he would testify from another courtroom away from the jury and his father. The testimony would be televised through a closed-circuit system to “minimize the trauma and to secure the boy’s uninhibited, truthful testimony. The boy was 5-years-old when his mother was killed. His older sister was 7-years-old and his younger brother was 4. The girl refused to answer Johnson’s questions and the younger boy was willing to talk but had trouble answering the same questions his older brother was asked. Munt’s trial is scheduled to start Monday. He is facing murder, robbery, assault, kidnapping and criminal vehicular operation charges. Munt’s attorney, Scott Cutcher has filed a motion for a change of venue and Johnson has said he will decide after the jury selection process starts.