This news blog is an educational exercise involving students at the University of Minnesota. It is not intended to be a source of news.

Caribou Coffee to close many of its stores

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Caribou Coffee, based out of Brooklyn Center, will close 80 underperforming stores and reopen another 88 stores as Peet's Coffee & Tea, the Star Tribune said.

The news comes after the German private equity group Jon A. Benckiser purchased the two companies about four months ago, the Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal said.

Nationwide, Caribou will see 26 percent of stores closed or rebranded, while only 3 of 201 stores are being closed in the Twin Cities, its largest market, the Star Tribune said.

Behind Minnesota, Caribou's second-largest market was Illinois with a total of 66 stores, MSPBJ reported.
A select number of Caribou coffeehouses in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., Maryland, Illinois, Georgia and eastern Wisconsin are expected to be the stores that will be shut down and reopened as Pete's Coffee & Tea stores, the Star Tribune said.

"Over the past few months, we have revisited our business strategy, have taken a hard look at our overall performance, and have made decisions that best position us for long-term growth," Caribou CEO Michael Tattersfield said in a statement, the Star Tribune reported.

According to the MSPBJ, all of the closings were effective starting April 14. As of last fall, Caribou owned about 400 locations, with about 200 additional franchises, MSPBJ said.

Analysis- Using Data

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For my analysis, I looked at a story published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution called "Cheating Our Children" about suspicious test scores in school districts in 49 U.S. states. The story talks about the fact that the data analysis does not directly prove cheating, but that it does reveal some troubling patterns within U.S. schools. The article includes an interactive map of the U.S. which you can search by five different categories that the article chose to analyze. You also have the option to go to a list of the school districts included in the results of the analysis to see if a specific district fell into one of the categories. In order to produce this story, the reporter needed to be able to interpret the data set themselves, or find someone who can analyze the data for them. At that point, the reporter had to decide how to best represent the information in a way readers can understand. So the reported also needed to know how to use the pinning function to put little pins on a map so that when a reader hovered over one of the pins, the text bubble would pop up with more details about that district.

The mayor of Charlotte, N.C., Anthony Foxx, will be nominated by President Barak Obama Monday to be the next secretary of the Department of transportation, the Washington Post said.

Appointing African-American Foxx to the post, which requires Senate confirmation, would appease the calls by President Obama's fellow party members for greater diversity of cabinet members for his second term, the New York Times said.

The Department of Transportation has been under intense pressure in recent days over flight delays caused by budget cuts, the Washington Post said.

Although Foxx is not a prominent political ally to the president as several of his recent nominations have been, a White House official praised Mr. Foxx's efforts to improve Charlotte's transit infrastructure as a way to expand the economy since becoming mayor in 2009, the Washington Post said.

Foxx would be joining Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. as the second black member of the president's cabinet, succeeding former Republican congressman Ray LaHood, who led the Transportation Department for four years, the New York Times reported.

The surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings was released from a civilian hospital and transferred to a federal medical detention center in central Massachusetts Friday, the New York Times said.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, left Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center overnight and was taken to the Federal Medical Center Devens at decommissioned Fort Devens U.S. Army base, about 40 miles west of Boston, the Dallas Morning News said.

The facility is a locked medical facility for male prisoners and treats detainees who require specialized long-term medical or mental health care, the New York Times said.

Tsarnaev is recovering from a gunshot wound to the throat and other injuries suffered while he was running from authorities, the New York Times said.

The Massachusetts college student was charged with setting off the shrapnel-packed pressure-cooker bombs that killed three people and wounded more than 260 at the marathon finish line April 15, the Dallas Morning News said.

A St. Paul man has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for his involvement with another man in the prostitution of two minors from an Eagan hotel, the Pioneer Press said.

Brandon Barnes, 25, was given a lesser sentence than what is suggested in the state sentencing guidelines, based on the judge's decision that Barnes had a lesser role and should be charged accordingly, WDAY 6 said.

Prosecutor Richard Dusterhoft sought a sentence of nearly 14 years, the same as the co-defendant Giorgio Baymon, WDAY 6 said.

Photos of the girls, ages 15 and 17, were taken in Barnes' bathroom according to Dusterhoft, and posted with Backpage.com ads, soliciting customers for sexual services, the Pioneer Press said.

Baymon put the 15-year-old's cellphone number in the ad to which two men responded, the Pioneer Press said. A third man who had sex with the girls was an acquaintance of Barnes and paid with cash and marijuana, according to Baymon's testimony, the Pioneer Press said.

The hotel room, which was in Barnes' name, was identified in a search warrant affidavit as the Microtel Inn & Suites, the Pioneer Press reported.

Barnes said he has a long history of mental illness and didn't understand what was going on in the hotel room, WDAY 6 said.

"My only mistake was to put the room in my name," he said when the judge offered him a chance to speak. "This case is the wrong place at the wrong time -- victim of circumstances," he said, referring to himself.

Baymon, 25, was sentenced Jan. 31 to nearly 14 years in prison for his role in prostituting the 15-year-old.

According to the Pioneer Press, both men were required to register as predatory offenders.

Russia: Deadly shooting at hunting shop leaves 6 dead

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Six people were shot and killed by a man in the southwestern city of Belgorod, Russia on Monday afternoon, Russian online publication RIA Novosti said.

The gunman, armed with a rifle, entered the hunting shop at around 2 p.m. and opened fire on the street and then inside the shop, RIA Novosti said.

Three people, including a 14-year-old girl, died on the scene inside the shop as well as two people out on the street, RIA Novosti said. Another woman died after she was taken to the hospital, the BBC reported.

The BBC reported that Belgorod police believe the attacker was a 31-year-old resident who had been released from prison a year ago.

At this point, the motive of this attack is believed to be robbery, the BBC said. In response, Belgorod authorities have declared Tuesday a day of mourning, the BBC said.

The suspect fled the scene in a BMW car that arrived on the scene, RIA Novosti said. The abandoned vehicle was found later by police, the BBC said.

Some media outlets have reported the possible involvement of a second suspect, but local authorities have yet to confirm this, RIA Novosti said.

The suspect is still at large and is believed to be hiding from authorities at a local car market, the BBC reported.

Regions Hospital's "additional examination" Saturday for the remains of a second stillborn baby within the linens sent to a Red Wing laundry service turned up empty following the discovery of a male stillborn wrapped in soiled linens on Wednesday, the Pioneer Press said.

The remains of the 19-week stillborn, whose gender is unknown, were sent out in the same linen container that carried a 22-week stillborn within soiled linens to be cleaned, CBS said.

The discovery of the first stillborn was reported in a news conference Wednesday, while the hospital released information regarding the search for the second set of remains Friday, the Pioneer Press said.

The investigation is being led by both the Minnesota Department of Health and the St. Paul police, with the aid and cooperation of the hospital, the Pioneer Press said.

Upon review of the pathology records for the past year, spokeswoman Elizabeth Nicklos told the Pioneer Press via email that, "all other stillborn remains have been properly accounted for."

Brock Nelson, president and CEO of Regions Hospital, announced that new procedures will be implemented immediately, including improved visual identification and tracking process and added security and supervision in that section of Regions, CBS reported.

The identities of the two families to whom the remains belonged have not been disclosed to "protect their privacy," Nicklos said.

At this time it is unclear whether the families are planning legal challenges against the hospital for the handling of the remains, the Pioneer Press said.

20 dead in China due to H7N9 bird flu virus

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According to the World Health Organization, the number of deaths in China due to the H7N9 bird flu virus has risen to 20, increasing the number of reported cases to 102, CNN reported.

70 of the infected people are still in the hospital while 12 have been discharged, Reuters said. Five of the most recently reported cases were in Zhejiang province and one was in Shanghai, Reuters reported.

The WHO's China representative, Michael O'Leary, issued data on Friday showing that half of the patients analyzed had had no known contact with poultry, the most obvious potential source, but he said it appeared human-to-human transmission was rare.

Data released on Friday by the WHO showed that half of the patients had had no known contact with poultry, Routers said. Although contact with poultry is the most apparent way to contract the virus, the WHO said there is still no evidence of human-to-human transmission, CNN reported.

"Until the source of infection has been identified, it is expected that there will be further cases of human infection with the virus in China," the WHO said in a statement.

China announced the first case of the H7N9 virus in humans only three weeks ago, CNN said.

Suspect arrested in Shakopee shooting

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Police have arrested a man Friday in connection with a shooting that resulted in the death of one man and wounded two others in Shakopee late Thursday, the Star Tribune said.

The suspect, a 27-year-old Minneapolis man, was arrested in a joint effort by officials from both the Shakopee and Minneapolis police departments, the Star Tribune reported. Police say there are two other suspects who remain at large whom they are investigating, the Star Tribune said.

The shooting occurred at 10:45 p.m. Thursday at an apartment in the 600 block of Gorman Street, the Star Tribune said. According to police, three people knocked on the door, entered the apartment and opened fire on people inside, killing a 19-year-old man and wounding his brother and a cousin, ArgusLeader.com said.

Police Chief Jeffrey Tate said that authorities do not believe the shooting was gang-related.
"This was not a random act of violence," Tate said. "It's important to get that out there. We want to make sure the public knows that."

The victim who was fatally shot has been identified as nineteen-year-old Marcos Antino Pantaleon, ArgusLeader.com reported. The other two vitims who were wounded at the scene are Pantaleon's 22-year-old brother and 17-year-old male cousin who were taken to Hennepin County Medical Center for treatment, ArgusLeader.com said.

Police said there were three other people in the apartment, including a teenage girl, a mother, and a father who were not injured, the Star Tribune reported.

According to the Star Tribune, Pantaleon would have turned 20 years old within 90 minutes of his death.

The chief said the assailants and the victims were familiar with each other on "some level," and that the investigation is still in progress, the Star Tribune said.

Tate also said that police have been called to the apartment before, but for "nothing like violent assaults or anything of that nature," the Star Tribune reported.

Southwestern China suffers deadly earthquake

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A deadly earthquake ripped through China's southwestern Sichuan Province Saturday morning, killing at least 132 people, injuring upwards of 5,000, and leaving still more people trapped in the rubble, the New York Times reported.

The earthquake happened at 8:02 a.m. local time in Lushan County near Ya'an city, Firstpost said. The quake's epicenter had a depth of 7.5 miles according to the U.S. Geological Survey, FistPost said. The China Earthquake Networks Center said the quake was a magnitude 7.0, the New York Times reported. Since it was relatively shallow, the quake was more destructive, the New York Times said.

Saturday's quake occurred along the same fault line of a devastating earthquake that left 87,000 people dead or missing in a mountainous region northeast of Chengdu, the provincial capital, back in 2008, the New York Times said.

The state news agency, Xinhua, received information from a hospital official who said crowds of injured people were had gathered in front of the county hospital on Saturday afternoon.
Premier Li Keqiang, along with other senior officials, flew by helicopter from Beijing to Sichuan Saturday to tour the damaged area and to visit the injured at the county's main hospital, the New York Times reported. "The current most urgent issue is grasping the first 24 hours after the quake's occurrence, the golden time for saving lives, to take scientific rescue measures and save people's lives," Xinhua quoted Mr. Li as saying.

Landslides have slowed down rescue efforts in the area, and concerns have been raised over two barrier lakes that have formed as a result of two debris-blocked waterways, the New York Times said.

"Now the houses on both sides of the street have become dangerous buildings," Zhang Linpeng, a resident, told the Sichuan news service. "I've seen people trapped in the ruins, and some people died. Many of the injured have been pulled out." Firefighters in Lushan were able to rescue 27 survivors from several collapsed buildings, the New York Times said.

Ya'an has a population of 1.5 million, and is located roughly 75 miles from Chengdu, the New York Times reported.