On Saturday, September 26, 1992, Sheriff Karl Halverson arrived at a crime scene to find three people dead, believed to be related to an earlier domestic incident.
LeRoy (57) and Cel (55) Weibel and their daughter Sue (29) Frydenlund were found around 5:30 pm by the Weibel’s son, who lived nearby. Thankfully, Sue’s two young children were found unharmed in their room in Brookview Trailer Court.
The Weibel’s and their daughter were beaten to death between late Friday evening and early Saturday morning. The Weibel’s were found in their bed while Sue was in the living room. All were wearing pajamas. Sue appeared to be the target as her head was wrapped in a rug after she was killed. She also had no defensive wounds. There were no signs of a struggle or forced entry.
Police were on the lookout for a silver Plymouth Champ with Minnesota plats driven by a 34-year-old male.
Sue’s husband, James Frydenlund (34), was not ruled out as a suspect and interviewed by both LaCrosse and Minneapolis police. Two days after the murders, he had not been in contact with Human Services about his children or the funeral home handling the services.
The investigation revealed two insurance policies had been taken out on Sue, on in May 1991 for $150,000 and one in November 91 for $50,000. Friends received letters and calls during the summer of 1992 from Sue, stating she feared her husband and wanted a divorce. She also said he was a religious fanatic.
In October 1993, Frydenlund was arrested and charged with three counts of first-degree murder. On July 1, 1994, he was found not guilty. The jury felt he was guilty, but there was not enough evidence to convict. Police consider this case closed.
I don’t remember this case or the articles for the tenth anniversary. Circumstantial evidence does seem to point to the husband. There was a brief mention of a repairman being a suspect, but it was hard to find additional information. Frydenunds defense also said Sue’s brother Rocky Brock was the killer. Again, I only saw the name mentioned and no other additional information.
I feel like there’s not enough information out there for me to form an opinion. Past cases make me think the husband did it (it’s a trope for a reason), but the evidence is so weak. A few hairs. Mileage on the car that didn’t add up. Things that can be easily explained.
Sometimes I feel the police fall into “the husband did it” and focus so much on that they may miss other evidence or suspects. It has happened before, and very much could have happened here. It becomes a detriment to a case to focus on one suspect and try to make the evidence fit. The evidence should lead you to the suspect, not forcing the evidence to fit a preconceived suspect.