- Associated Press - Monday, December 15, 2014

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A judge on Monday set a trial date for a Minneapolis man accused of fatally shooting his ex-boyfriend and business partner at a gas station this summer after announcing that attorneys had failed to reach a plea deal.

Lyle “Ty” Hoffman, 44, who became the subject of a monthlong manhunt after the shooting, appeared in an orange jumpsuit in Ramsey County District Court on one count of second-degree intentional murder. Hoffman is charged with shooting 48-year-old Kelly Phillips, an attorney and Boston Scientific vice president, on Aug. 11 at an Arden Hills gas station.

The Star Tribune reported (https://strib.mn/1swoTVB ) that Judge George Stephenson said attorneys failed to reach a “resolution,” or plea deal, in the case.

Stephenson set Hoffman’s trial date for Feb. 17, reserving two weeks for the trial. The next hearing for Hoffman, who has pleaded not guilty, is scheduled for Jan. 21.

Attorneys did not divulge details of their plea talks, and declined to answer questions after the hearing.

About a dozen of Phillips’ family members and friends attended the hearing, including his parents and partner Nathon Bailey, whom Phillips was scheduled to marry in late August. Phillips was killed on the anniversary of his engagement to Bailey.

Bailey declined to comment after the hearing.

Hoffman eluded police for a month before being arrested Sept. 11. A witness spotted him outside a fast-food restaurant in Shakopee and called 911. He’s also accused of robbing a bank in Blaine.

Phillips and Hoffman had opened Lush Food Bar, a popular Minneapolis club, in 2009. Court documents described Phillips as the owner and Hoffman as the manager. At some point after they broke up, Hoffman was fired and evicted from a duplex owned by Phillips.

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Information from: Star Tribune, https://www.startribune.com

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