Sentencing for Last Place on Earth owner Jim Carlson has been set for Aug. 14 in Minneapolis, his attorney said.

Attorney Randall Tigue told the News Tribune that he was notified of the hearing Thursday morning.

In October, a federal jury in Minneapolis found Carlson, 57, guilty of 51 crimes at his trial in relation to the sale of synthetic drugs at his downtown Duluth head shop. Also convicted was Carlson’s girlfriend, Lava Haugen, on four counts, and his son, Joseph Gellerman, on two counts.

Tigue said the more-than-10-month period of time between the trial and sentencing was due to the unique and largely unprecedented nature of the case.

“There are relatively few of these (cases) that have been sentenced throughout country,” he said.

Attorneys received a finalized presentence investigation on July 3. Tigue said the report, which is not publicly available, remains largely unchanged from the preliminary version, which called for a 20-to-40-year sentence for Carlson.

Tigue said that with the report comes the understanding that he and fellow attorneys can argue for lesser sentences, based on their clients’ beliefs that their conduct was lawful. He said he would seek a significantly lesser sentence, but declined to give specifics.

Prior to sentencing, prosecutors and defense attorneys must submit written sentencing position pleadings to U.S. District Judge David Doty.

Attorneys for the defendants have long stated that they will appeal the case to the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, citing multiple issues they had with Doty’s rulings at the trial. Tigue said an appeal would likely be filed within a day of sentencing.

Carlson’s store has not operated since July 19, 2013, when it was shut down by a judge’s order.

Newsletter signup for email alerts