Eagan man pleads guilty in 2009 stabbing

Taylor James Pass was also charged and acquitted in the stabbing death of Burnsville woman

Taylor James Pass
Taylor James Pass

An Eagan man will serve up to 20 years probation after pleading guilty in connection to a 2009 stabbing in a Burnsville.

Taylor James Pass, 21, pleaded guilty on Aug. 16 to second-degree attempted murder for assaulting a man on April 7, 2009.

Pass’ plea was part of a plea agreement that dismissed remaining charges and called for a stayed prison sentence of 153 months. Pass was also sentenced and received credit for 240 days in jail served while the case was pending.

He is expected to serve up to 20 years probation. The specific amount of time on probation will be determined by Dakota County Community Corrections.

“I expect it will be a significant period of time,” County Attorney Jim Backstrom said.

Prosecutors say Pass stabbed Odia Al-Refo in the garage of his Burnsville townhome after Pass allegedly fatally stabbed Al-Refo’s roommate, 35-year-old Tina Nicole San Roman, during a struggle. Al-Refo survived the attack.

Pass initially faced second-degree murder charges in San Roman’s death, and second-degree assault and multiple counts of second-degree attempted murder charges in Al-Refo’s stabbing.

He was acquitted of the murder charges but the jury was deadlocked on charges he stabbed Al-Refo.

A district court judge ruled at the time that evidence in San Roman’s case couldn’t be used in a new trial involving the Al-Refo’s stabbing.

The state appeals court upheld the lower court’s ruling, but the Supreme Court reversed it on June 24.

“It’s been a long and difficult case and a very tragic situation,” Backstrom said. “It hasn’t been an easy process …. I believe the plea was in the interest of justice.”