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Ty Hoffman will stand trial on Feb. 17 for the murder of Kelly Phillips. His initial hearing will be on Jan. 21.

Phillips was the owner of Lush Food Bar, and a LGBT community leader who worked to defeat an anti-gay marriage amendment in 2012. Phillips and Hoffman were partners who split up several years ago and co-managed Lush. Phillips was the owner and Hoffman was the manager.

According to the Pioneer Press, no plea deal has been accepted in the case.

The Star Tribune described the scene at Hoffman’s court appearance on Monday: “Lyle “Ty” Hoffman, 44, appeared in Ramsey County District Court on Monday on one count of second-degree intentional murder, looking thinner than he did when police finally caught up with him near an Arby’s drive-through in Shakopee on Sept. 11.”

On the morning of Aug. 11, Hoffman is alleged to have stalked Phillips, and then later shot him at a gas station in Arden Hills.

Hoffman led police on a month-long manhunt where Hoffman allegedly robbed a bank and laundered the money at Mystic Lake Casino. He was apprehended outside an Arby’s in Shakopee.

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Andy Birkey

Andy Birkey has written for a number of Minnesota and national publications. He founded Eleventh Avenue South which ran from 2002-2011, wrote for the Minnesota Independent from 2006-2011, the American Independent from 2010-2013. His writing has appeared in The Advocate, The Star Tribune, The Huffington Post, Salon, Cagle News Service, Twin Cities Daily Planet, TheUptake, Vita.mn and much more. His writing on LGBT issues, the religious right and social justice has won awards including Best Beat Reporting by the Online News Association, Best Series by the Minnesota chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and an honorable mention by the Sex-Positive Journalism awards.

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