Arrest made in Kocurek homicide
Suspect in custody in Arizona, awaiting extradition
By Bruce Karnick [email protected]
Tuesday, May 18, 2021, emergency personnel were called to the Coratel Inn of Hastings for an unconscious person. That person was Kelly Kocurek. Kocurek was at the hotel awaiting transport to treatment. She was trying to make her life better when that life was tragically cut short at 36. Her mother, Lynda Dahl recapped the morning.
“Kelly had an addiction, and she was going to treatment Wednesday,” Dahl explained. “Tuesday morning, she called me around 9 a.m. and she asked me, she says, ‘Mom, I forgot one of my suitcases, would you please bring it here.’ So I did.”
Kocurek was a Hastings native who moved to Red Wing but still spent a lot of time with friends in Hastings. Kocurek was dating Kyle Steven Williams. Dahl stated she did not agree with the relationship because she felt the man was dangerous. Dahl alleged that just a few weeks prior, she had to pick up Kocurek from a home in Lake City because Williams had allegedly assaulted Kocurek.
“I told Kelly by no means did I want Kyle in that hotel room, and she promised me (he would not be),” said Dahl.
When Dahl arrived at the hotel to meet her daughter, Williams was with her, and she was promising her mom that everything was fine. Dahl said her goodbyes for the day. “She said give me three kisses, that is my lucky number. I said I know, so I gave her three kisses and then I told her good luck at treatment tomorrow. When she was walking away from me, she says ‘Love you mommy.’” That was the last she heard her daughter’s voice.
Near the end of August, Dahl received a letter in the mail from the prosecuting attorney’s office that they were pursuing second degree murder charges.
“It's not going to bring my daughter back, you know, but I’m pleased he won't hurt anybody else, and I think he's a demonic monster,” added Dahl, regarding the charges.
See “HOMICIDE,” Page 3
Kelly Kocurek HOMICIDE
From Page 1 Williams is currently in Arizona awaiting extradition. In discussing the extradition prnccss in general with officers, they explained that extradition is a tricky process. There is a lot of fine details to work out between offices. The biggest detail is whether extradition happen via air or land. Those negotiations take place between counties. It could take a week, or it could take several months, hi the specific case of Williams, there is no known timeline for the extradition.
Hastings Police Chief Bryan Schaffer released a statement and the Criminal Complaint Warrant, reprinted below: 'On May 18th. Officers responded to a medical call at the Coratel Inn and Suites, 2450 Vermillion St. Upon arrival. Officers found Kelly Koeurek, age 36, unresponsive. Officers and EMS performed lifesaving measures and transported her to Regions Hospital in St. Paul where she died on May 23rd. From the time of the incident and the weeks that followed, Hastings Police Investigators along with the MN Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and Ramsey County Medical Examiner have worked collaboratively on the ease. On August 19th, a warrant was issued for Kyle Steven Williams, age 32 of Red Wing, MN for 2nd Degree Murder-(with intent)-(not premeditated) MSS 609.19.1(1). Williams was arrested in Phoenix, AZ and is awaiting extradition to MN. 1 would like to recognize the ongoing efforts of the Hastings Police Department staff, MN Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, the Ramsey County Medical Examiner and the Dakota County Attorney's Office throughout this investigation.The Hastings Police Department offers our deepest condolences to Kelly Koeurek's family and friends in the wake of this tragic incident.'
The statement of probably cause contains disturbing details of the alleged crime: “When officers arrived at the hotel, the defendant, Williams, ran out the front door of the hotel screaming for officers to hurry. Williams led them to room 205 and told officers he could not get “her” to wake up and told officers to “zap' her. Upon entry to room 205, officers saw Koeurek laying on the floor on her back, with her left arm across her body. She was unresponsive and there were several cords which appeared to be cut next to her. Her face was bruised and swollen, and o fficers observed marks around her neck.
Williams told officers that Koeurek had strangled herself. Kocurek was transported to Regions Hospital where she was in a coma for five days before passing away May 23.
Other witnesses reported hearing a 'boom, boom, boom, like people were wrestling or fighting.' Witnesses also reported they heard a male voice yelling 'Kelly! Kelly!” Shortly after that, witnesses saw Williams in the hallway with blood on him.
An autopsy was performed by the Ramsey County Medical Examiner's Office. The medical examiner determined that the Koeurek's death was a homicide and that she died as a result of asphyxia due to ligature strangulation. The medical examiner noted several injuries related to the asphyxia which were inconsistent with self-inflicted injury, including a horizontal abrasion on the neck, a fracture of the hyoid bone,deep soft tissue hemorrhage, and petechial hemorrhage in both eyes. The medical examiner also noted numerous traumatic head injuries he attributed to physical assault, including bruises on her face, head, and ear, in addition to bilateral fractures of her jaw.
Dahl was shocked at what her daughter went through in her last moments.
'I read it all. and 1 mean I was just so devastated, and I still am about how she died, all the details on how much Kelly went through before she passed away. Now that's going to he imbedded in my brain forever. It's constantly on my mind about how she passed away, and 1 didn't know t h a t s a i d Dahl.
Dahl believes the charge of second degree is not enough. “|First degree is] what 1 feel he should have I mean, he had to somewhat, you know, contemplate this in his mind before he did this to Kelly. How in the world? I was gone for 25 minutes from my daughter. How in the world did he do all this in that short of time? I think he had it premeditated.”
'There's not a day that goes by that, you know I'm thinking of her right when 1 get up in the morning to when go to bed at night. How she endured so much suffering,” a tearful Dahl described. 'I'm happy he is not getting by with this, and I’m happy that no other person has to endure the suffering from him. It’s not going to bring Kelly back, but at least 1 know that he is going to