Joe Senser, victim

Amy Senser Jean Pieri / St. Paul Pioneer Press via AP

Sometimes, it’s just a good idea to take a knee.

With his wife, Amy, about to be sprung from prison months early for her criminal vehicular homicide conviction, former Viking Joe Senser is still refusing to accept what a jury determined only a little more than two years ago: His wife killed a man and then drove away without stopping. That makes her a criminal.

Senser, 47, of Edina, killed 38-year-old Anousone Phanthavong, as the man stood by his car, which had broken down on an highway off-ramp. She testified she thought she hit a construction barrel when she heard the noise of Phanthavong’s body being thrown 50 feet, with pieces of Mrs. Senser’s Mercedes nearby.

She’s about to be released early from the women’s prison in Shakopee, which might rankle people who have insisted from the beginning that status and wealth have worked in her favor from the moment Phanthavong died.

C.J., the Star Tribune gossip columnist, interviewed noted defense attorney Ron Meshbesher, who was asked how he’d defend her.

“People just didn’t believe what she was saying about it,” he replied. “They weren’t able to find out if she was drinking too much. That’s a tough case for anybody to win.”

That was too much for the former Viking who fired off an e-mail to the reporter:

“Read your little quip quote from [Meshbesher]. Amy Senser had no knowledge that she was in an accident,” wrote Joe Senser. “Go back and look at the conditions, the construction, the brakes were never applied, there was no swerving or tire marks which would indicate knowledge. Elected [Hennein] County Attorney Mike Freeman knew she had no knowledge, he sat in his ivory tower and proceeded to craft the most evil … narrative that made it impossible for Amy to receive a trial that included the truth.”

“No way,” he replied when asked if he’d like to do an interview on the subject, which is also what should’ve gone through his mind when he started an e-mail.

Give credit for a husband still defending his wife. But Senser shows a certain tone deafness at a time when early release might reignite the discussion that gripped the state in the aftermath of the accident — that the Senser family showed an insensitive disregard for Mr. Phanthavong’s family.

Anousone Phanthavong family. Jeffrey Thompson / MPR News
  • Joe, just let it go already.

  • jon

    “Elected [Hennein] County Attorney Mike Freeman knew she had no knowledge, he sat in his ivory tower”

    I did not know that county attorneys got ivory towers…

    Guess it’s an easy mistake to make when every one you’ve ever worked with has gotten an ivory tower as part of their signing bonus…

  • Dave

    I can imagine that he was indescribably angry when she was convicted. And it probably made him even angrier when his wealth and status could not get her off. I mean, what good is being a wealthy (local) celebrity when it doesn’t afford you a more “favorable” system of justice?

  • Hugh Shakeshaft

    Justice was not even close to being served here. My heart goes out to Anousone Phanthavong’s family. I hope they find peace through God as they certainly aren’t getting any help from the state. This news disgusts me.

  • Ted

    “Truth” from Joe is apparently not found either as there are many holes in Amy’s story that she / they refuse to detail.

    Amy is guilty. Period.

    I will never support nor spend one penny in Joe’s business after his denial and media circus.

  • Joe

    Maybe Joe Senser is the victim of getting concussions while playing in the NFL, don’t be judgin’.

  • J F Hanson

    wealth, health, status, smatus.

    These are two alcoholics in a dependency relationship. Deception and dishonesty are imperative for maintaining that.

    Those deceptions will not change until they both confront that dependency.