Recently in LOCAL NEWS Category

9-year-old boy killed in dirt bike accident

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By Alexa Ball

A 9-year-old boy was killed in a dirt bike accident Friday in Oak Grove, CBS Minnesota News said.

Nickolas Engler was found not breathing on his home dirt track by friends Friday evening, the Star Tribune said.

Engler was an avid motocross biker and was wearing all of the proper equipment to ride, the Star Tribune said.

No one saw what happened, Engler gained permission from his parents to use the track and his friends were still inside getting their shoes on so they could go outside and watch him, the Star Tribune said.

Robert Engler, the boys father, is the Oak Grove assistant fire chief and was the first on the scene to try and resuscitate him, according to authorities,CBS Minnesota News said.

"Every safety precaution was taken. The boy was wearing a helmet, chest guard, he was also wearing boots, gloves, and he was an avid motocross biker. Certainly the father and family knew inherent risks and protected their family the best they could, with the protection equipment they used that day," said Anoka County Sheriff's Office Lt. Lenzmeier, according to CBS Minnesota News.

By Alexa Ball

An 8-year-old Bemidji boy's condition is improving after he was involved in a sailboat accident that claimed his two younger brothers lives, the Star Tribune said.

Isaiah Risland is at Children's Hospital in Minneapolis, comment on his CaringBridge from his aunt state that he is gaining consciousness and responding to voice, the Star Tribune said.

Isaiah, father and younger brothers were boating on Clearwater lake April 6 when they capsized, authorities said, according to the Pioneer Press.

All three boys were wearing life jackets, and spent about an hour in the 40 degree water. Father, Dan Risland, was unable to reach the boys and swam to get help, according to the Star Tribune.

6-year-old Zech and 2-year-old Jacob died of hypothermia, according to the Star Tribune.

By Alexa Ball

The first group of Minnesota National Guard soliders returned home Sunday, according to the Star Tribune.

215 soldiers from the 1st Squadron, 94th Cavalry, 1st Brigade Combat Team returned to St. Paul the National Guard said, according to the Pioneer Press.

The public is invited to welcome all of the troops who will be returning over the next few weeks, the Pioneer Press said.

"We are very proud of the brigade's accomplishments in supporting the final phase of the Iraq War during Operation New Dawn," Army Lt. Col. Rick Schute said. "We welcome and encourage the public to attend these initial reunions. It means a lot to soldiers and their families when they see the community gather to welcome them home," according to the Pioneer Press.

The soldiers will be carried on buses on routes throughout the state and will stop at armories, including Pine City, Cloquet, Duluth, Hutchinson, Redwood Falls Anoka, St. Cloud, Brainerd, and Bloomington, the Star Tribune said.

By Alexa Ball

This year's road construction costs will total $1.1 billion and consist of more than 300 projets the Minnesota Department of Transportation announced Thursday, the Star Tribune said.

The Insterstate 35 bridge in Duluth, Interstate 694 and Highway 10 interchange in the Twin Cities are just some of the major roads included in the 316 projects that will take place over the next year, the Pioneer Press said.

"MnDOT is focused on improving our highways and maximizing the capacity of the system," Commissioner Tom Sorel of the MnDOT said. "We want to ensure that it provides a safe and efficient trip for all users," according to the Star Tribune.

The new road work will support thousands of jobs and will help the economy Sorel said, according to the Pioneer Press.

Moorhead waitress gets $12,000 tip

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By Alexa Ball

A Moorhead waitress was just returned her $12,000 tip, which police confiscated in suspicion of it being drug money, according to the Star Tribune.

Stacy Knutson was working at Fryn' Pan restaurant when a customer told her to keep a takeout container that held various wads of bills adding up to $12,000, the Pioneer Press said.

Police originally told Knutson she was allowed to keep the generous tip if no one claimed the money for 90 days, according to the Pioneer Press.

Knutson filed a lawsuit that said a customer left her takeout container at her table, and Knutson followed her out into the parking lot where the woman told her to keep the box. When Knutson came into the restaurant and found the cash she notified the police, the Star Tribune said.

"This is a woman with five kids who has been a waitress for 18 years," Knutson's attorney Craig Richie said. "She and her family were praying and asked God's intervention to touch these people's hearts, and that's what happened. It was about God providing for her," according to the Star Tribune.

By Alexa Ball

Out of the 1,000 aboard a cruise ship that caught on fire in the South China Sea ten were residents of Bemidji, according to the Star Tribune.

The residents include June Buenger, Sue Cuperus, Susan Sandell, Miriam Smart, Kevin and Susan Lind, Patricia and Ernie Rall, and Jeff and Evi Thompson, the Bemidji Pioneer said, according to the Star Tribune.

"We will get a full refund for this cruise and a certificate for another cruise with Azamara Club Cruises," a traveler on board from Bemidji told the Bemidji Pioneer, according to the Pioneer Press.

By Alexa Ball

Five extended family members from Jordan, Minn. were killed in a motor home crash and 13 others were sent to the hospital Sunday in Kansas, according to the Star Tribune.

The motor home was traveling from Texas to Minnesota, the Pioneer Press said.

The vehicle which was filled with 18 passengers was heading northbound when the driver lost control around 9 a.m. the Kansas Highway Patrol said, according to the Pioneer Press.

The motor home hit a guardrail and a concrete bridge rail before it crashed into a creek near the town of Williamsburg, the Pioneer Press said.

The fatality victims included adults and children and the crash is still under investigation Trooper Don Hughes said, according to the Pioneer Press.

At least four of the 13 that were injured were hospitalized in critical condition, police said, according to the Star Tribune.

Gophers beat North Dakota 5-2

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By Alexa Ball

The Minnesota Gophers mens hockey team shut down the top-seed North Dakota team with a 5-2 win Sunday earning them the NCAA West Regional title, the Pioneer Press said.

Erik Haula scored his 20th goal of the season during the game against North Dakota, according to the Star Tribune.

Ben Marshall, Travis Boyd and Nate Condon scored the other points for the Gophers Sunday, goalie Kent Patterson made 24 saves for the team, the Star Tribune said.


Hunger Games fans pack the Mall of America

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By Alexa Ball

The publicity event involving the cast from "The Hunger Games" film filled the Mall of America with thousands of fans Friday, the Star Tribune said.

The movie, which comes out March 23, is based off of three books written by Suzanne Collins where teenagers are televised and forced to fight to the death, the Pioneer Press said.

A large crowd of people slept on the floor of the rotunda at MOA after waiting in line all night, the Star Tribun said.

"We haven't slept at all!" said Taylor Roelofs, 16. Roelofs and her friends arrived at the mall at 8 p.m. Thursday to get in line for the 5 p.m. Friday meet and greet with the movie cast, according to the Pioneer Press.

By Alexa Ball

Three people testified during trail Thursday that ex-girlfriend to Viking's Chris Cook said he choked her during a fight, according to the Pioneer Press.

Those who testified included a police officer, paramedic and emergency room doctor that all spoke with then girlfriend, Chantel Baker, the night of the fight, according to the Pioneer Press.

Cook, 25, has been accused of domestic assault by strangulation and third-degree assault, according to the Pioneer Press.

The fight took place at Cook's home in Eden Prairie after the couple spent a large portion of their night at a strip club, jealousy is seen to be a main factor in the argument that became physical, according to the Star Tribune.

Cook's defense attorney, David Valentini, said that the Viking's defensemen did strike Baker out of self defense, she had beaten him with a wedge shoe, tore out shoulder length dreadlocks and threw a lamp at Cook during the fight, the Star Tribune said.

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