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Moorhead man accused of killing mother charged with murder

James Kollie Jr. faces 40 years in prison if convicted. Just days before the killing, he told his mother he was “ready to take your life,” a criminal complaint alleged.

A mugshot of a man with braids.
James Kollie Jr.
Contributed / Richland County Jail
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MOORHEAD — A Moorhead man who is accused of killing his mother has been formally charged with second-degree murder.

Clay County prosecutors filed the felony charge Monday, Dec. 5, against 25-year-old James Diawo Kollie Jr. Police confirmed Monday that the victim was James Kollie’s mother, 56-year-old Receia Kollie.

A criminal complaint said the killing was not premeditated.

Receia Kollie.jpg
Receia Kollie
Submitted Photo

Police responded shortly before 11 p.m. Thursday to 3819 32nd St. S., where Receia and James Kollie lived. Family found the mother on the floor of the foyer when they arrived to check on her because she didn’t meet her daughter when she planned to, a criminal complaint said.

There was no sign of forced entry, according to police.

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Moorhead Police Capt. Deric Swenson confirmed Monday that the victim died from multiple "sharp force trauma" wounds. Police haven't found the weapon, he said.

Police believe Receia Kollie was killed earlier in the day, Swenson said. A friend saw Receia Kollie driving her 2016 black Honda Pilot around 1:45 p.m. Thursday in Fargo, according to the criminal complaint detailing the murder charge. Receipts showed she bought something as late as 2:10 p.m. that day, the complaint said.

James Kollie's cellphone records showed someone used the phone to call his mother around 6 p.m. using a blocked number, the complaint said. His phone was also near Receia Kollie's house between 6 a.m. and 4:09 p.m. Thursday, according to the complaint.

Investigators believe James Kollie took his mother’s vehicle after the killing. The black 2016 Honda Pilot with license plates HFE185 was not located as of Monday, Swenson said.

Phone records suggested Kollie left the Moorhead area around 4:11 p.m. Thursday and arrived in the Wahpeton, North Dakota, area about an hour later, the complaint said.

Receia's vehicle.jpg
Receia Kollie's vehicle
Moorhead Police Department

James Kollie remains in custody at the Richland County Jail in Wahpeton, where he was arrested Friday night without incident.

The suspect showed little emotion when he was told his mother was dead, a criminal complaint said. James Kollie showed “significant anger” toward his mother because he was arrested days before her death and kicked out of the house, the complaint said.

James Kollie claimed he hitchhiked to Wahpeton after he was released from jail on the domestic assault charge.

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He appeared Monday in Richland County District Court, where he said he would fight extradition to Moorhead where he would face prosecution on the murder charge. A date for his first appearance in Clay County District Court was not set as of Monday.

If convicted, James Kollie faces up to 40 years in prison.

Anyone who finds the vehicle is asked to call local law enforcement. Those with information about James Kollie, or anyone who saw him between Nov. 29 and Dec. 2, should call the Red River Regional Dispatch Center at 701-241-5417 and ask for an on-duty Moorhead police supervisor.

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James Kollie was also arrested Nov. 27 on accusations that he threatened to kill his mother. An audio recording caught James Kollie telling his mother that he “was ready to take your life,” the complaint for the murder charge said.

The altercation didn’t get physical, but his mother told police she was afraid he could kill someone when his emotions became “volatile,” according to court documents.

She also told police that her son had mental health issues, court documents said.

James Kollie was charged with a misdemeanor count of domestic assault in that case but was released without having to pay bond. He was ordered to not have contact with his mother.

WDAY reporter Matt Henson contributed to this report.

April Baumgarten joined The Forum in February 2019 as an investigative reporter. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, N.D., where her family raises Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at the University of Jamestown, N.D.
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