Black motorist’s killer convicted of second-degree murder

(l-r) Anthony Trifiletti; Douglas Lewis

A Ramsey County jury on Monday found Anthony Trifiletti guilty of second-degree murder for the May 1, 2020, shooting death of Douglas Lewis.

The shooting occurred after a minor traffic accident on Hwy 61 near Burns Avenue in Saint Paul. Sentencing is scheduled for June 2, 2021, in Ramsey County District Court.

On March 8, a Ramsey County jury determined they could not come to a verdict in the first trial, thus forcing the judge to declare a mistrial. Trifilleiti remains in custody with bail conditions unchanged per the order of a Ramsey County judge.

Related Story: White motorist charged with murder of unarmed Black man in St. Paul

As the MSR previously reported, it’s not clear what led up to the deadly encounter, but Trifiletti from Watertown, Minnesota, told police that Lewis’s car bumped his truck from behind. According to Trifiletti, they pulled over supposedly to share insurance information. Words were exchanged and both drivers got back in their car.

But according to the prosecutor of the case, Trifiletti, 25, shouted at Lewis, 39, and Lewis got back out of his vehicle. Trifiletti, who has a gun permit, subsequently fired at Lewis, striking him four times and killing him.

Douglas’ sister Valerie Lewis said he came to Minnesota to escape the violence of Chicago. “He came here to get away from issues in Chicago and wound up losing his life,” she told the MSR. His girlfriend and mother of his four children said he was a caring and loving father.

Ramsey County Attorney John Choi released a statement about the verdict: “While we are grateful that justice has been delivered in this matter, our hearts go to the family and friends of Douglas Lewis whose life was unjustifiably taken by the defendant.”

The MSR will continue to update this story as it develops.

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