Young woman shot dead by the father of her baby

Timothy Hendricks

Timothy Hendricks facing second-degree murder charge

A young mother is dead after being shot in the head by the father of her child.

She was shot while seated in the back seat of a car next to her 8-month-old son. Her father was in the driver's seat.

The incident occurred in the evening of Wednesday, April 16, near the corner of White Bear Avenue and East Seventh Street, according to a complaint from the Ramsey County attorney's office.

According to the complaint:

Timothy Scott Hendricks, 19, of St. Paul is charged with second-degree murder for killing 20-year old Michelle Marie Ploetz in the presence of their baby boy and Ploetz's father.

The woman had gone with her father to meet Hendricks at Little Oven, a restaurant at White Bear and Minnehaha avenues, so he could see their son and discuss custody of the boy. Ploetz's father came along out of concern for his daughter's safety.

At the dinner, the woman and her father told Hendricks that he wouldn't be able to see the boy anymore.

Hendricks asked "Why can't this be like it always was?"

After dinner, Hendricks was given a ride home.

On the ride, he told police, "I just snapped.

"I was hearing voices in my head and I just snapped and I couldn't tell you really what happened."

Hendricks also reportedly admitted to police that he shot Ploetz, saying that it was while he was hearing voices in his head.

After shooting Ploetz, Hendricks reportedly shot at her father and missed, breaking the windshield of the car.

Hendricks then fought with her father for control of the gun, as Hendricks again shot at the man.

The father then fled, as did Hendricks.

Police later learned that Hendricks may have been picked up in a car and brought to Regions Hospital, where he was arrested.

Hendricks reportedly told officers that he was hearing voices and blacked out while en route.

Once in custody, Hendricks was under suicide watch. Despite this, he reportedly broke his own pelvis and jaw when he jumped over a railing. He was scheduled to undergo surgery today.

The victim's father reportedly told investigators that he tried to get Hendricks committed to psychiatric treatment on three separate occasions because Hendricks had threatened to harm Ploetz and her son. Ploetz's father also told investigators Hendricks had threatened him, and also threatened self-harming behavior.

Hendricks had previously told another friend that he was going to kill Ploetz, the friend told police.

When police arrived at the scene of the shooting, they found Ploetz unconscious but still breathing. She was taken to Regions Hospital and put on life support. She was later taken off of life support, and passed away.

-- Patrick Larkin


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