Man sentenced to probation for threatening woman with ax

Published 9:01 pm Monday, September 13, 2021

A man who pleaded guilty in March to threatening a woman with a miniature ax at a motel in Albert Lea was sentenced to up to three years of probation Monday in Freeborn County District Court.

Ben Moreno

Ben Vidal Moreno, 31, was sentenced to one year and one day in prison but that time was stayed for three years, meaning he will not have to serve the time if he complies with his probation.

Moreno initially was also charged with second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon but that charge was dismissed.

Email newsletter signup

Court documents state Moreno reportedly threatened the woman with the ax and held it to the back of her head and threatened to kill her. The woman, who was reportedly covering her head with her hands, stated Moreno allegedly slid the ax across her wrist, causing cuts. 

When police searched the motel room where the incident occurred, they reportedly found an 8-inch miniature ax under a laundry bin near the refrigerator. They saw a blood smear on the outside of the motel room door.