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Offender’s trial starts Tuesday

The jury trial of a predatory offender accused of violating offender registration requirements is scheduled to start Tuesday in Walker.

The offender, Robert Arthur Litzau, 69, has been charged with felony knowingly violating registration requirements as a predatory offender and felony second-degree burglary in Cass County District Court.

According to the criminal complaint filed May 28, 2010, Litzau has a long history of opposition to his statutory duty to register as a predatory offender. He was convicted of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct in Crow Wing County in April 1999 and in 2009 he was convicted of knowingly violating registration requirements for predatory offenders and sentenced to 17 months in prison.

Litzau has a history of sexual contact with adolescent males, ages 14-15, and he was known to his victims, according to the Minnesota Department of Corrections.

The burglary charge stems from an allegation that Litzau had broken into the home of a rural Backus woman at which he had been staying at but after she had kicked him out.

Litzau had requested a change of venue for his trial because of pretrial publicity, but Judge John Melbye denied the request. The trial is expected to last at least three days, according to state court records.

Litzau also faces charges in Crow Wing County of felony knowingly violating registration requirements as a predatory offender and gross misdemeanor obstructing the legal process. The charges were filed Feb. 3, 2011, after he was stopped by Pequot Lakes police for not registering new license plates or vehicles. During the arrest Litzau was accused of assaulting a Pequot Lakes Police officer.

His arrest in the Pequot Lakes case resulted in his violating conditions of his release on the Cass County charges. Litzau’s next appearance in Crow Wing County District Court is an omnibus hearing at 9 a.m. on Nov. 22.

MATT ERICKSON may be reached at or 855-5857.