Recently in Local News Category

Bicyclist Killed Near U of M Campus

A bicyclist died after she was hit by a dump truck near the University of Minnesota campus Thursday morning.

The collision happened just before 8 a.m. at 4th Street Southeast and 15th Avenue Southeast, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.

The dump truck struck the female bicyclist as it turned onto westbound 4th Street Southeast.

Police are concerned with the recent number of accidents involving cars, pedestrians and bicyclists, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Mn/DOT Seeks Volunteers For New Research

The Minnesota Department of Transportation is searching for volunteers to test new technology that would track the number of miles people drive each day.

Mn/DOT wants 500 volunteers from Hennepin or Wright County to use smart phones in their cars to gather milage information, KARE 11 reported.

The data from the phones would be used to collect a milage-based user fee from drivers, rather than charging a gas tax, Northland's News Center reported.

This change in taxing would help create revenue for Mn/DOT in the future when the popularity of fuel efficient cars increases and gasoline use decreases.

Ice Out Declared on Lake Minnetonka

Residents of Minnesota are ready for summer after ice out was declared on Lake Minnetonka on Thursday.

Ice out is determined when a boat can be directed through the "narrows" of the lake, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

This tradition dates back to 1855 and usually occurs within the first couple weeks of April.

The Freshwater Society has monitored the spring melt since 1968, KARE 11 reported.

Pedestrians Trespassing on Closed Lift Bridge

Police arrested a man on multiple charges Sunday after he drunkenly tried to cross the closed Stillwater Lift Bridge.

Police charged Steven A. Cran, 46, of trespassing, fifth degree assault, disorderly conduct and possession of an open container of alcohol in public, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Cran was taken to Washington County Jail after he illegally crossed the police barrier on the bridge and threatened a Minnesota Department of Transportation worker and his family, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.

Five other people received citations for trespassing on the bridge Sunday night.

Police Shot and Killed Carjacking Suspect

Police shot and killed a man after he led them on a 40 minute car chase through Minneapolis Thursday morning.

The chase began near downtown Minneapolis after the man pulled a gun on a taxi driver and stole the cab. It ended on northbound Interstate 35E near Forest Lake, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

The suspect ran over spike strips on the road and drove into the ditch. He got out of the car holding a gun, and police shot him, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.

The involved police officers are on standard administrative leave.

Three Locks Closed to Traffic

Three Mississippi River locks near the Twin Cities were closed to all traffic Wednesday due to rising water.

The St. Paul District of the U.S. Army Corps of engineers closed the Upper and Lower St. Anthony Falls locks and Lock 1 near Minnehaha Park, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.

The locks were required to be closed because rain fall and melting snow will make the river unsafe for navigation by Friday, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Debate Over Funding For Vikings Continues

A Vikings official debated with others Wednesday at the University of Minnesota about whether public funding should be used to pay for the new Viking's stadium.

Jeff Anderson, the Vikings' assistant director of public affairs, argued that the team gives revenue, jobs and public services back to the community, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Art Rolnick, former Minneapolis Federal Reserve research director, disagreed and said that the Vikings should be treated just like other businesses in Minneapolis. If they do not have the revenue to fund their business, they will fail, the Pioneer Press reported.

There was no doubt among debaters that the Metrodome needs to be replaced. However, with the state in a $5 billion budget deficit, even 75 percent of Minnesota residents did not support using taxpayer money.

Minneapolis Homicide Victim Identified

Family members identified a woman who was shot and killed on Monday in south Minneapolis.

The woman was identified Tuesday as 21-year-old Stephanie Smith, a psychology student at Minneapolis Community and Technical College, KARE 11 reported Wednesday.

Smith and another man were shot Monday night while they were in their car. The man suffered non-life threatening injuries, Fox 9 reported.

Smith was already the fourth victim of homicide in Minneapolis in 2011.

Adults in Hennepin County Smoke Less, Weigh More

Obesity rates of adults in Hennepin County have risen, while the number of smokers has declined, the 2010 Survey of the Health of All the Population and the Environment (SHAPE) said.

SHAPE found that 12 percent of adults living in Hennepin County smoke, which is less than the state and national averages. It is also down 21 percent since 1998, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Although that is good to hear, the survey also brought some bad news. Twenty percent of adults were found to be obese and 33 percent were overweight, the Twin Cities Fox station reported.

Pawlenty Takes a Step Towards the White House

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty hinted towards a White House run Monday by announcing the formation of a presidential exploratory committee.

Pawlenty pitched his idea in a video that he posted on his Facebook page, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.

Pawlenty was one of the first Republican candidates to announce a White House campaign for the 2012 election, the Austin Daily Herald reported.

The former governor has been criticized for his lack of spark and charisma.

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