St. Paul shooting kills woman and injures husband

Heidi Firkus, 25, died inside the home at 1794 W. Minnehaha Ave. when a shotgun went off during a struggle with an intruder Sunday morning, according to KARE 11.

Her husband, Nicholas Firkus, 27, was shot in the leg and treated at Regions Hospital where he has since been released.

Nick Firkus told police that he and his wife were upstairs around 6:30 a.m. when they heard a noise downstairs. He said he grabbed his shotgun and walked downstairs with his wife where an intruder coming through the front door confronted him.

"A struggle ensued over the shotgun," said Sgt. Paul Schnell. "The shotgun went off and the wife was shot."

Branden O'Connor, who was house-sitting next door, heard a muffled sound coming from the victims' home Sunday morning and was concerned.

"I thought I heard, 'Please stop!'" O'Connor said. "I may have also heard, 'You shot me,' or, 'You shot her.'"

Calvary Baptist, where the Firkus' attended church, in Roseville held a prayer service Sunday night.

Heat avoid elimination with game 4 win

Dwayne Wade put on one of the best playoff performances of all time in keeping the Heat alive to see another day, according to ESPN.

Wade scored 46 points, 30 in the second half of what could have been his final game as a member of the Heat. The Heat won by a final score of 101-92 over the Boston Celtics on Sunday in game 4 of the Eastern Conference first-round series.

According to ESPN, Wade made 16 of his 24 shot attempts and went 5-7 from downtown on his way to outscoring the Celtics by himself in the fourth quarter 19-15.

Heat forward Quentin Richardson has come to terms that nothing Wade does on the basketball court will surprise him anymore.

"Sometimes, you know, he puts on the cape, man," Richardson said. "There's not a lot of things you can do when he's playing that way."

Game 5 will be back in Boston where the Celtics will look to once again silence Wade and finish off the series to advance to the next round.

Plumbing Co. taking advantage of St. Paul explosion

KSTP reports that a home in Highland Park exploded in February after a sewer repairman hit a gas line, and some accuse a local plumbing company for using the incident to make money off the neighborhood.

After the explosion Xcel had begun offering camera inspections for free but Benjamin Franklin Plumbing had sent out postcards saying they would do the service for $99, according to KSTP.

"I thought it was too bad that this company wanted to charge us $99," said Carol Tauer, a St. Paul resident. "And make it seem like a bargain."

The company owner, Paul Gavic, claims that they are offering it to customers who want faster service than Xcel's.

"Could take two to three years before the contractor looks into someone's sewer," said Gavic. "And in the meantime, they could have a backup and could have another explosion."

Eagan Woman is stranded in Bulgaria

Leah Spring went to Bulgaria to help a friend in adopting a child, but the Iceland volcanic eruption is delaying her return to Minnesota and her family. Airline officials say it could be another month before they can go home, according to Channel 5 Eyewitness News.

The story reports that the delay of departure could interfere with the adoption process because of the expiration date on the paperwork.

According to what U.S. Embassy officials told Spring and her friend, they are the only Americans in Bulgaria currently and they do not have any answers.

The delay of departure could interfere with the adoption process because of the expiration date on the paperwork, according to the story.

Spring misses her family more than anything but can remains in touch through Skype everyday and for, will just have to wait it out until the airlines are cleared.

Earthquake could hit San Andreas Fault soon

Seismologists believe that the San Andreas Fault is a prime candidate to produce a large earthquake in California, according to a report by Ted Rowland of CNN.

The San Andreas Fault is a prime candidate because it has not produced an earthquake in hundreds of years and is due.

There have been 80 earthquakes in California and Baja, Mexico in 2010 over a 4.0 magnitude, which is double the number of earthquakes in all of 2009, according to the report.

Most of those were aftershocks from the big Mexican one so it evens out to a normal rate after you factor that in.

According to scientists, there will probably be and earthquake of 5.7 or higher in southern California within the next few weeks.

Minnesota DWI ignition device bills move forward

Gov. Tim Pawlenty is in favor of new bills proposing that DWI ignition devices be put in driver's cars who have acquired a DWI and feels that they are essential to cleaning up the roads, according to the Star Tribune.

Pawlenty was in favor of making it mandatory to put the devices in every convicted offender's vehicles in place of taking away their driving privileges, but the bills being put through are a little more lenient for first-time offenders, making it just an option for those caught with low blood-alcohol levels.

"More than 40 states have some kind of interlock requirement in their law books," Sen. Steve Murphy told the Star Tribune. "With at least half of them putting the penalties on first time offenders and repeat drunken drivers."

On Wednesday the committee approved the bill, while the House Ways and Means Committee approved a similar bill also. The proposals could be put up to a vote as soon as next week in both chambers.

"Quite frankly, we are behind in Minnesota on this," said Murphy.

Fakes will be revealed in new exhibit at National Gallery

The National Gallery in London has decided to display over 40 pieces of artwork that were removed from the Gallery because they were discovered to be fake, the BBC reports. The collection reportedly contains works of art from Hans Holbein and Sandro Botticelli.

The exhibition is going to be a six room exhibit that displays some of the biggest challenges that gallery experts faced over the years and it will be called a celebration of "the remarkable collaboration of scientists, conservators and art historians" according to BBC.

One painting that will be on display is a painting that the Gallery acquired in 1990 and believed it was a Holbein but was discovered to be a fake after they ran a microscopic paint analysis test on it.

According to the BBC, the gallery paid more for a fake than a real Botticelli when two pieces were purchased at the same time, in June 1874.

Venus and Mars were acquired along with the more expensive An Allegory, which was thought to be a companion piece. But later found that it was just an imitator by the name of Raphael after removing the unoriginal paint.

The exhibition titled Close Examination: Fakes, Mistakes and Discoveries will open June 30 and run until September 12.

5 US airlines will continue to keep carryons free

Some major U.S. airlines will not follow the lead of a small Florida airline and continue to not charge for carryon luggage. Even though American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, US Airways and JetBlue Airways will most likely report first-quarter losses next week they are not willing to start charging for carry-ons.

According to the Star Tribune, as many as 26 of U.S. airlines have been adding fees to everything from carryons, food, and even pillows which allows them to keep low base fares even though the gas prices are high.

But these airlines are afraid of losing their customers with the charges and have decided not to add the fees.

"We believe it is something that's important to our customers and they value," Roger Frizzell, American Airlines spokesman told the Star Tribune. "And we will continue making that available to them at no charge."

A group of senators wants to make sure that the airlines don't change their mind in the future and decide to start charging fees for carryon bags. New Hampshire's Jeanne Shaheen, Maryland's Ben Cardin, Minnesota's Amy Klobuchar, and New Jersey's Robert Menendez and Frank Lautenberg support legislation that would tax airlines if they charge carryon bag fees.

The volcano in Iceland last week that erupted has caused chaos for many businesses and people as it has interfered with air travel. No flights going in or coming out of Europe have been cleared to take off in the last four days and until the ashes clear the skies they will continue to be grounded.

Eighty percent of European airspace remained closed for a fourth day on Sunday, with only 4,000 of the normal 20,000-flight schedule in the air, the Star Tribune reported.

"It is clear that this is not sustainable," said Siim Kallas, EU Transport Commissioner. "We cannot just wait until this ash cloud dissipates."

There is hope however. According to the Star Tribune, air traffic believes that some flights can start taking off come Monday as forecasts have shown the air starting to clear of the ashes. All flights will not be cleared, though, only about half of the normal flights will get the go-ahead and the sense of complete air travel is still unknown.

The ashes in the air can be very dangerous to a flying plane as the ashes can get caught up in the engines, shutting them down causing the plane to fall out of the sky. They have sent some passenger-less test flights and those have gone smoothly so there is reason to be optimistic.

The airlines have been hurting greatly because of the flying restrictions, basically losing over $200 million every day because of the cancelled flights.

Fire code inspectors not receiving proper training

The Minneapolis City Council decision to transfer fire-code inspections to the Fire Department in 2004 is under scrutiny after an apartment fire killed six this month could have been handled better, according to an investigative report by the Star Tribune.

City officials had not checked the upstairs unit of the apartment for violations of the fire code for almost 16 years and many see the split of responsibility between two departments as inadequate.

"I have heard mixed stories, not a whole lot of stories," said Cam Gordon, vice chair of a committee that oversees inspections told the Star Tribune. "Some people have said the Fire Department does a good job and is competent and they are happy with the inspections they have gotten. But I have also heard the concern that maybe there should be professional housing inspectors doing these inspections."

The Star Tribune reports that two fire captains have said that they don't have adequate training to carry out their jobs as housing inspectors.

According to the Star Tribune, Council Member Elizabeth Glidden, chair of the Regulatory Services Committee, said reports are showing that the fire department is not finding as many violations of the fire code as regulatory services are because they are not sure what to look for.

"I definitely lack expertise," said one of the captains. "I have a list of what is a violation and what isn't, but I don't exactly know what it means."