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December 14, 2008

Firey Accident Leaves One Dead

A blazing car crash killed one person says the Star Tribune and WCCO.

The accident happened Saturday night at the intersection of Highway 252 and 66th street in Brooklyn Center report both publications.

The Star Tribune says that accident occurred at 6:17 p.m. when a car rear-ended another car. This set off a chain-reaction involving five cars.

One of the cars caught fire, and the person in the car burned to death. WCCO says that this person was a male, but the Trib says although suspected to be a male, the gender of the person could not be confirmed because the body was so badly burned.

The victim was driving a 1994 Chrysler Lebaron says WCCO.

The Trib says that one other person was injured, but WCCO says that three others were injured.

Both articles say that the accident was alcohol-related, but the Trib added that no arrests had been made, and WCCO said that the roads were also wet that night.

Zimbabwe Blames West for Cholera

Information Minister Sikhanyiso, an ally to the Zimbabwean President, said on Thursday that he blames the outbreak of cholera in his country western countries report the AHN and BBC News.

The AHN actually attributed the words to Presideent, Robert Mugabe.

Specifically Sikhanyiso called it “a calculated racist terrorist attack on Zimbabwe by the unrepentant former colonial power which has enlisted support from its American and Western allies so that they invade the country.� (AHN)

He also said that the disease is “genocidal onsl aught on the people of Zimbabwe by the British.� (BBC)

The disease has left 792 people dead report both publications. That number is likely to keep rising, and the BCC says that the UN World Health Organization warns it could reach 60,000 if nothing is done to stop the spread of the disease.

US ambassador to Zimbabwe James McGee says that people were drinking from sewers, many hospitals remained closed, and there was no trash collection happening in the country. He blames the outbreak on the “political crisis and the failed economic policies of its government� says the BCC.

The AHN says that Zimbabwean government has also suggested that the United States was to blame for the outbreak.

An African bishop likened Mugabe to that of a present day Hitler says that BBC.

“The situation is truly grim. One man and his cronies - Robert Mugabe - are holding this country hostage,� Mr McGee said, AP news agency reports.� (BBC).

Palin's Church Damaged by Fire

The church of Sarah Palin, Alaskan Governor and former vice-presidential nominee, was badly damaged by fire on Friday night says the New York Times and CNN.

The church was located in her hometown of Wasilla say both publications.

The fire caused Sarah to say that she was sorry if the fire was in any way connected to the negative attention the church received since she was the vice-presidential nominee says both NYTimes and CNN.

While the cause of the fire has not been determined, arson is being considered among the possibilities say both publications.

The damage is estimated at around $1 million say CNN and NYTimes.

CNN says that fire started around 9:40 p.m. Friday (1:40 a.m. ET Saturday). The firefighters continued to fight the fire until 5 a.m. on Saturday.

CNN also said that Rev. Larry Kroon said that a ladies craft group was in the church at the time of the fire, but they got out and no one was hurt. He also said that it only adults in the building at the time. Kroon would not say exactly how many people were in the building at the time.

But NYTimes reports that a handful of people, including two children, were in the building at the time of fire, but all got out safely. NYTimes also says that Kroon declined to report of the church had recently received any threats.

Palin stopped by the church on Saturday.

�Whatever the motives of the arsonist, the governor has faith in the scriptural passage that what was intended for evil will in some way be used for good,� McAllister, Palin’s spokeman, said. (NYTimes)

Settlement Reached With Family Who Home was Mistakenly Raided

The city of Minneapolis reached a settlement deal on Friday with a family who home was mistakenly raided by the police in 2007 says K-SAX and WCCO.

F-SAX says that the Minneapolis City Council approved the settlement of $612,000 that the family will receive. The city said they will also make the rest of the payments on the home of the family, the house which was raided, although the family no longer resides there. The house is located in the 1300 block of Logan Avenue North.

That home was raided by Minneapolis police on Dec. 9, 2007 says K-SAX. They police believed that a gung member of the ‘Rolling 60’s gang’ lived at the house and that the gang member was stockpiling weapons in the house. This information reached the police from a reliable source the K-SAX article says. However, this information proved to be false.

WCCO says that city approved $800,000 for the settlement, and that about $600,000 of that will be paid to the family with the rest paying for the house payments on their house.

WCCO says that the raid occurred one week before Christmas last year. Yee Moua, the mother, called 911 while her husband, Vang Khang grabbed his shotgun when the intrusion started. Khang hit three officers with gunfire, but did not hurt any due to their body armor.

“This warrant was the result of a flawed investigation done by the Minneapolis Police Violent Offender Task Force,� Former U.S. Attorney Tom Heffefinger, who represented the family, said. “Shots missed Yee and Vang by less than a foot.� (WCCO)

WCCO says that the informant who gave the police the false information also used a fake name when giving them the information. She, Morgan Ashley Young, is still wanted for a felony prostitution charge.

December 7, 2008

Pilot Killed in Plane Crash

The pilot of a plane that took off from St. Paul died when his plane crashed in Michigan says the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press.

The plane was headed to Glen Falls, N.Y. say both publications. He was from Lake George, N.Y.

The Star Tribune says that the pilot, whom was never named but said to be a 47-years-old man, was dead at the scene. He was the only person onboard the single-engine plane. He took off in his Cessna 206 at 10:16 a.m. from St. Paul’s Holman Field. The plane crashed southeast of Traverse City, MI at 2:15 p.m. It circled the area for a little while, dipped its wing, and clipped some trees before crashing into a mobile home. Luckily, the occupants were outside shoveling and were not hurt. The plane crashed through their roof and destroyed their house. The Star Tribune also says that National Transportation Safety Board and the FAA are investigating the crash.

The Pioneer Press reports some similar information and some different information. They say that the plane crashed in rural Kalkaska County, an area south of Traverse City, MI. The couple, Scott Sanford and Justin Rider, said that the plane “struck the edge of their home before coming to rest near a pole barn.� A section of the plane lodged into the couple’s mobile home. Sheriff Bill Artress said that contact with the plane was lost at 2:20 p.m. The name of the pilot was being withheld as his body was being taken to Grand Rapids for an autopsy Artress said.

Cholera Cases put Zimbabwe in a State of Emergency

Country officials are calling Zimbabwe a “state of emergency� as a cholera breakout has been sweeping though the nation says the BBC and the Times Online.

The Times says that the country’s Prime Minister said that the nation is in a “international state of emergency,� while the BBC said that nation officials made the statement.

The Times says that the disease has taken the lives of 575 people but the BBC puts that number at more than 550.

The outbreak begin in August, and besides the 575 dead, 13,000 others are sick says the Times.

The country is now asking for international help to cue the disease.

“This is now an international rather than a national emergency,� said the Prime Minister. “International because disease crosses borders.� (Times Online)

Making matters worse is that the disease is hitting the nation during an economic meltdown and political stalemate. (BBC)

Urgent help is needed because the disease, which causes extreme dehydration, can kill within 24 if not treated says the Times. With rehydration kits and Cholera testing packets, the disease could be preventable says the Times.

The other problem is that the country has poor water. The capital has been without water since Sunday due to a lack of purification tablets says the BCC. But, the Europeans Commission has promised $12 million worth of clean water and drugs to the country. Great Britain has also pledged an aid package to the country to help stop the spread of the disease says the Times.

However, the good news is that the health minister reports a drop in the number of cases in the each providence except for Harare.

Two of Zimbabwe’s neighboring countries, Botswana and Mozambique, have also reported some cases of the disease says the BBC.

10-year-old Killed in Christmas Parade

A 10-year-old girl was killed during a Christmas parade on Saturday says the Associated Press and KFDM News.

The girl was riding in one of the floats that was apart of the parade says KFDM News. She tripped and hit her head after jumping off the float, and then the float proceeded to run the girl over say witnesses. It was about 7:15 p.m., and the parade was finishing up when the accident occurred. The girl was pronounced dead within minutes of arriving at the hospital with severe head injuries.

That accident happened in Beaumont, TX.

The Associated Press says that it was not the first time the girl had jumped off of the float during the parade route when she fell and hit her head. A police dispatcher said that she been jumping on and off the float throughout the parade route and was repeatedly told to stop. They say that it was the trailer behind the float that hit her.

The AP also reports that according to a Beaumont resident the accident was almost avoided because the parade was close to being cancelled due to the destruction from Hurricane Ike earlier this year. But she says they choose to hold the parade to try and bring some positivity to the town.

The AP says that hundreds were in attendance for the parade, and that former Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett, who was temporarily paralyzed during a game last season, was the grand marshall.

December 2, 2008

Flooding in Venice

The city of Venice in Italy is experiencing major flooding reports CNN and Voices of America.

VOA says that flooding is the worst flooding in over 20 years for the city while CNN says it is the worst is the last 22 years.

CNN says that in some parts of the city the water is neck-deep. The famous St. Mark’s square was under nearly a meter of water at one point after water broke though the city’s canals. This height of water grew as strong winds made the water rise to 1.56 meters. When the water reached this level warning were issued to citizens.

After the wind changed direction the water level begin to go down a little bit. The 1.56 meters of water almost made a new record. The last record was from 1989 when the city had 1.58 meters.

The water taxi’s temporality stopped service once the water reached the 1.56 meter mark says VOA.

Other towns also flooded on Monday. These Croatian towns were located on the Adriatic. (VOA) The publication also says that Italian government is working on an expensive project “to help prevent floods from destroying the city.�

CNN also says that if the city doesn’t work to fix this problem it could see daily flooding, and that water level would slowly be permanently rising.

December 1, 2008

Sex in the Metrodome

Two Iowans were cited for indecent conduct at the Metrodome during the Minnesota versus Iowa football last Saturday says WCCO and the Star Tribune.

The Star Tribune says that a security officer saw the couple “having relations� in a handicap bathroom stall and found the police after seeing the incident. The police then separated the couple and cited them for misdemeanor indecent conduct. The two people, Ross M. Walsh, 26, and Lois K. Feldman, 38, engaged in the activity while a crowd cheered. Walsh is of Linden, Iowa, and Feldman is of Carroll, Iowa. The police say that both were intoxicated at the time. The police also said that Walsh was released to his girlfriend and Feldman to her husband.

WCCO reports a similar story. They said that about 15 people were gathered watching the couple inside the men’s handicap bathroom stall. They say that the security guard went and got police after he saw two sets of legs beneath the stall with pants and underwear around their ankles. WCCO did not name the two people, and only gave their ages of 26 and 38 years old. The women may have provided the police officers with a fake middle name at the scene. She could be charged with providing false name for this action.