Former Motivational Speaker Convicted of Attempted Murder

A former motivational speaker from Cambridge who used a tough-guy approach to tell kids to stay off drugs has been convicted on two counts of attempted murder.

An Isanti County jury convicted 45-year-old Russell Simon Jr. on Tuesday on charges connected to the events of May 15 at his live-in girlfriend's home.

Simon allegedly went to the house after a night of drinking, stripped off his clothes and fired shots at his girlfriend and an old prison buddy.

The two ran outside, but she went back inside the house to check on her 9-year-old son. Simon demanded she perform a sex act on him or he would shoot her and the boy.

Authorities said lab tests later showed that Simon had cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana in his system that night.

Simon was also convicted on charges of assault and wielding a dangerous weapon. Sentencing is scheduled for December 11.