The third season of Investigation Discovery’s ‘Murder in the Heartland’ features the tragic tale of Mindy Morgenstern in its first episode. A lively 22-year-old student of the Valley City University, Mindy was murdered in cold blood by strangulation and stabbing. Her lifeless body was discovered by her close friends Toni Baumann and Danielle Holmstrom, who had gone to check on her after she failed to return their calls for a considerable amount of time.
The man accused and later convicted of Mindy’s murder was Moe Gibbs, who was sentenced to life imprisonment after a prolonged hearing. Mindy’s boyfriend at the time, Jordan Ranum, was a key person during the trial as the defense insisted on including him in the suspect list. Here’s what we found about Jordan Ranum and his contribution to the case.
Who Is Jordan Ranum?
Jordan Ranum had been dating Mindy Morgenstern at the time of her death. Despite certain misunderstandings, it was later alleged that the couple’s romance had persisted cordially. Ranum was present in the court on the day of Gibbs’ trial. After the verdict was read, he reacted by cupping his face in his hands and was one of the many who cried. Ranum had also been a major target of suspicion from the defense, as was evident from their consistent attempts at accusing him instead of Gibbs for the murder throughout the trial.
The prolonged proceedings leading up to the verdict heavily impacted Ranum, along with Morgenstern’s family and other friends. The fear of a hung jury also loomed owing to the first trial where the jury deadlocked 6 for 6 on the verdict. Morgenstern’s case is deemed to be one of the most infamous murder cases in North Dakota history. The verdict ruling Moe Gibbs as the murderer came after an entire year following the incident.
Where Is Jordan Ranum Now?
Jordan Ranum had been an active participant in the trial against Moe Gibbs and was heavily invested in obtaining justice for his late girlfriend. The defense had constantly tried to direct the blame of the murder towards Jordan Ranum throughout the trial. Hence, when the verdict ruled against Moe Gibbs, and he was sentenced to life imprisonment, Jordan Ranum was more than grateful to the North Dakota Law enforcement members, who he believed had played a pivotal role in ensuring justice for Mindy.
To show his gratitude, Ranum penned down a letter in the local newspaper addressing the sincere efforts of the Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the Valley City Police. He mentioned the names of those he had personally met in the letter stating that he was “very proud” to know them and “to have had their support.” Ranum expressed his intention behind writing the letter to be an attempt at acknowledging the impeccable job done by the investigation team and to make the public aware of the same.
On the first anniversary of Mindy’s death, a heart-shaped garden was dedicated to Mindy. The garden is located less than a block away from the apartment Mindy was killed in. Bonnie Ranum, Jordan’s mother commented that the garden could serve as a “healing place” to remember Mindy. The empathetic and personal sentiments shared by the Ranum family members were reflections of the closeness Jordan and Mindy had in their relationship.
Read More: Where Is Moe Gibbs Now?