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Man pleads guilty in shooting death of popular teacher, bar owner

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A Pine Springs man pleaded guilty Wednesday to shooting and killing a popular teacher and bar owner in January in an apparently random act.

Bailey Jordan Garcia, 19, entered the plea in a Washington County courtroom to unintentional second-degree murder in the death of David Frigaard, 46, of Roseville, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.

Frigaard, an art teacher at Park High School in Cottage Grove and owner of Frigaard's Bar in Willernie, was killed with a single gunshot to the chest on Jan. 24, as he was sitting in his truck at a stop sign in Mahtomedi.

The shooting occurred around 3:30 a.m., and police say Frigaard was on his way home after closing up the bar.

The criminal complaint against Garcia says he was parked at the intersection, and when he saw Frigaard’s truck come up to the stop sign, he shot it with a rifle and fled the area.

Garcia admitted to police that he’d been drinking, and went to the intersection with the rifle to “shoot a few deer." He admitted to firing at the truck, but fled because he didn’t know if he hit the driver.

Garcia ended up crashing his car and was later arrested by Washington County Sheriff’s deputies.

Garcia told investigators he had gotten into an argument with his father and brother earlier that evening and was contemplating suicide.

In court Wednesday, family and friends of both Frigaard and Garcia filled the gallery, the Pioneer Press notes.

Garcia did not speak except to answer questions from attorneys about the events of that night, the Star Tribune reports.

Garcia has a history of anxiety, depression and suicidal tendencies, and his attorneys said he can't remember some of the events from the night of the shooting, according to the newspaper.

It added that Garcia is remorseful, and "bewildered and shocked" that he killed somebody.

Frigaard was married and had three children. He was well-liked at Park High School and was very involved in the school community.

Following Frigaard’s death, students and staff created a memorial at the school, crafting hundreds of pieces of art to remember their teacher, the South Washington County Bulletin reported.

Staff and patrons at his bar in Willernie set up a memorial in his honor.

Garcia will be sentenced on Aug. 14. He faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison.

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