ST. PAUL, Minn. — Authorities have dropped murder charges against a Minnesota man suspected in the disappearance of a woman who’s been the subject of searches in the Dakotas.

Fifty-one-year-old Timothy James Barr, of Lakeville, was charged with second-degree murder and criminal vehicular homicide. He was accused of killing 45-year-old Michelle Lee Newell, of Vadnais Heights, who was last seen with him in late August.

Barr pleaded guilty Wednesday to fleeing police. But Ramsey County prosecutors dropped the more serious charges, saying the court lacks jurisdiction because there’s no evidence the alleged crimes were committed in Minnesota.

Prosecutors allege Barr indicated to informants he argued with Newell and ran her over before disposing of her body, possibly in North or South Dakota.

Authorities say Barr remains a suspect and the charges could be refiled.

VIAThe Associated Press
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