Murder of Chad Swedberg by so-called friend Ken Andersen investigated on Reasonable Doubt

Mugshot of Ken Andersen
Ken Andersen was sentenced to life for murdering Chad Swedberg. Pic credit: Minnesota Dept. of Corrections

Reasonable Doubt is investigating the murder of Chad Swedberg, who was shot dead as he worked in the woods making maple syrup near his home in rural Becker County, Minnesota, in 2007.

His friend and business partner, Ken Andersen, was convicted of the murder several years later; however, a lot of the evidence was circumstantial, which has left some wondering if the cops did actually bag the true killer.

On the morning of April 13, 2007, Swedberg left his home and traveled a short distance to the camp where he made maple syrup. A short time later, his wife, Leslie Fain, heard two gunshots coming from the camp area.

Concerned for his welfare, she phoned her husband on his cellphone but got no answer. When Fain and Swedberg’s brother, Ken Swedberg, went to investigate, they found the 34-year-old lying motionless. He had been shot twice, once in the back and once in the buttocks with a rifle, and had then bled to death.

The police largely became suspicious of Andersen because of the inconsistencies in his story surrounding his whereabouts and what happened on the day of the murder. He was also known to have contacted Swedberg shortly before he died.

Had Chad Swedberg and Ken Andersen had a troubled relationship?

The pair had been friends and business partners, but Swedberg wanted to end their partnership and had decided to pull out of the construction business he operated with Andersen. The latter had also been trying to persuade his friend to join him in a leeching business, but Swedberg had said no.

The police began to believe that Andersen couldn’t take no for an answer and had shot Swedberg with a high-powered rifle.

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The main piece of evidence used against Andersen was the discovery of a Tikka 300 Winchester Short Magnum bolt-action rifle hidden on his property. The killer had already told the police that he had sold the weapon. The cops believe that this weapon was probably the firearm used to murder Swedberg.

Swedberg had further raised suspicions due to his uncooperative behavior as the police searched his property. Having initially consented to a search of his house, he became angry with the officers when they started searching the outbuildings where the rifle was eventually discovered.

The rifle was found to have Andersen’s fingerprints on it. Ironically this weapon had been purchased by Swedberg for Andersen at some point before the murder.

In 2010, Andersen was found guilty of first-degree premeditated murder and was subsequently sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.

More from Reasonable Doubt

Follow the links to read about more murders where reasonable doubt has been raised.

Mary Elizabeth “Liz” Hermann by Justin Lunsford had spent the night in Cave Creek, Az., partying pretty hard, but at some point, the police believe Lunsford murdered Hermann and tried to set fire to her house. Hermann claimed to be innocent and said drug dealers were the true killers.

Roosevelt Myles was sentenced to 60 years in prison for the murder of 16-year-old Shaharian Brandon. However, he claims he was framed for the murder by the Chicago Police Department.

Reasonable Doubt airs at 10/9c on Investigation Discovery.

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