Protesters urge action in search for Joshua Guimond

The 21st birthday of missing St. John’s college student Joshua Guimond on June 18 was marked by a demonstration at the Stearn’s County Courthouse in St. Cloud.

A group of about ten people organized by Joshua’s father, Brian, marched at the courthouse in a short, morning demonstration with signs asking for more activity into the investigation into Joshua’s disappearance from the St. John’s campus last November.

Leona Hexum said it wasn’t hard to make the decision to participate in the demonstration. “You know how you’d feel if it was one of yours,” she said.

Media representatives covering the demonstration included KSTP-5, Channel 13 TV-News in St. Cloud and the St. Cloud Times.

Brian Guimond said the demonstration was intended to push for a special prosecutor and grand jury investigation into Joshua’s disappearance.  “We want someone to do their job,” Guimond said. “That doesn’t mean sit at your desk and wait for leads to come in.”

Guimond said his priority now in the search for his son is to “keep up the pressure” on Stearn’s County officials, law enforcement agencies, and the University of St. John’s to continue efforts to find Joshua.

Brian Guimond received a letter from St. John’s in early June stating that the Stearns County Sheriff’s Department has indicated that the SJU property has been satisfactorily examined and that no further searches are planned on the property.

Michael Hemmesch, St. John’s Director of Communications, said any search efforts undertaken by the Guimond family must be done in consultation with local authorities and that the college will continue to work with law enforcement agencies in the search for Joshua.

Stearn’s County Sheriff John Sanner said he and his staff were aware of last week’s protest at the courthouse, and understand the frustration felt by the family, but he said such activity is not necessary.

“I understand what the family is going through,” Sanner said. “They want us to stay focused, but we are focused. We’re looking at the case on a daily basis.”

Sanner said his staff is working with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the University of St. John’s on a new development in the investigation.

“There are some things that we’re looking at that I can’t share with the media at this time,” he said. “But there are some things that have come to our attention that deserve a closer look.

“We’re doing everything in our power to determine what happened to Joshua and where he is right now.”