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Prior Lake fires city manager following domestic assault charges

The city council voted on the termination Monday.
Michael plante

The Prior Lake City Council has voted to terminate city manager Michael Plante after he was charged with domestic assault.

The council voted to fire Plante Monday following a closed meeting.

The council also appointed assistant city manager Lori Olson to interim city manager, and then voted to convene an evaluation committee to begin a search for a new city manager.

Plante was charged by the Scott County Attorney’s Office on Aug. 16 of one count of first degree of felony domestic assault and two counts of misdemeanor domestic assault.

“The Council’s action today is in the best interest of our employees and our residents. Our job is to promote public confidence in the integrity of the administration of city government. Charges of this nature impact that trust,” said Prior Lake Mayor Kirt Briggs, according to a city notice

Plante, 36, was arrested last Wednesday after a woman identified as his wife reported him to police for assaulting her, according to a criminal complaint.

The charges say the two were in an argument in their home that morning when the victim grabbed Plante's phone and "and asked if she should look through it."

Things escalated from there. According to the charges:

(Plante) demanded his phone back. Victim tried to walk away, but Defendant grabbed her. Victim started to walk up the stairway. When she reached the third step, Defendant put his arm around her neck from behind, and began to squeeze her neck... Victim reported that she could not breathe or speak for part of this time. Defendant threw Victim to the floor... Defendant then pinned her to the floor with his knee. 

The criminal complaint adds that Plante took his phone back from the victim, at which point she was able to get away from him. 

Plante was then charged Thursday with domestic assault by strangulation — a felony carrying up to three years in prison — and a misdemeanor count of domestic assault. 

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