Nicolae Miu

Nicolae Miu

A bloody confrontation July 30 on the Apple River in Wisconsin that left a Stillwater teenager dead and four people with serious stab wounds apparently began with an argument over why a 52-year-old man was snorkeling near floating inner tubes carrying young women and girls.

Nicolae Miu, of Prior Lake, was charged Monday in St. Croix County Circuit Court with first-degree intentional homicide in the death of Isaac Schuman, a 17-year-old rising senior at Stillwater Area High School. He also is charged with four counts of attempted first-degree intentional homicide.

According to the criminal complaint, Miu was part of a group floating on the river earlier in the day. He said he later returned to the river with snorkel gear to search for a cellphone in a waterproof floating case that a member of his party had lost.

However, witnesses said Miu was bothering a group of floating juveniles who then sought help from others floating nearby. The other group got between Miu and the juveniles and told him to leave, calling him a “child molester” and a “pedophile,” according to statements Miu and his wife gave to investigators.

Miu told police that he had drunk “a lot of beer” on Saturday, the complaint states. He said he told the group of angry tubers “that if he was a child molester, and they were children, they shouldn’t be drinking alcohol.”

The complaint describes some of the confrontation as captured in a witness’s cellphone video obtained by authorities. Someone can be heard in the video accusing Miu of “looking for little girls.”

Miu, a mechanical engineer at Ritchie Engineering Co. in Minneapolis, spoke with an investigator at length and described his actions as “self-defense,” according to the complaint.