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

April 2013 Archives

Macalester students protest Wells Fargo ties

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A group of Macalester students refused to leave administrative offices Tuesday after the college decided not to cut ties with Wells Fargo bank, Twin Cities Daily Planet said.

The group initially consisted of 15 students who entered Macalester President Brian Rosenberg's office, the Pioneer Press said. The crowd increased to 35 students by the evening, the Pioneer Press said.

Students told the Pioneer Press that Wells Fargo was the biggest forecloser in Minnesota. The Kick Wall Street Off Campus movement at Macalester accuses Wells Fargo of refusing to help homeowners, during the mortgage crisis, who are in foreclosure on their mortgages, the Twin Cities Daily planet said.

Students believe that community banks would be able to handle the relationship that the school currently has with Wells Fargo, and the switch would help the community, the Pioneer Press said.

"Kick Wall Street Off Campus," a student group on campus, also organized a rally outside a building on campus, which 80 to 90 students showed up in support of the cause, the Pioneer Press said.

The student group is associated with Occupy Homes MN, a group that fights foreclosures by large banks, such as Wells Fargo, the Pioneer Press said.

Possible poisoned letter sent to senator

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A suspicious letter sent to the office of a Mississippi senator Tuesday tested positive for a deadly poison, The Wall Street Journal said.

The letter was addressed to Senator Roger Wicker's office, but was intercepted before reaching Capitol Hill, ABC News and The Wall Street Journal said. The letter had no return address but was postmarked from Memphis, Tenn., said ABC News.

After the letter was screened at a senate mail facility in Maryland, it was flagged for possibly containing poison, The Wall Street Journal said. The preliminary test for ricin came back positive, ABC News said.

A spokesperson for the Capitol Police told The Wall Street Journal that the envelope contained a "white granular substance." Mail to the senate has been suspended, ABC News said.

The substance was sent to the lab and final results will be available within 24 to 48 hours, The Wall Street Journal said.

Authorities told ABC News and The Wall Street Journal an individual who frequently sends letters to members of Congress is being questioned.

A Russian campaigning journalist, who became a symbol in Russia after a brutal beating, died Monday.

Mikhail Beketov died at age 55 from heart failure, The New York Times said.

After Beketov's campaign in 2008 against a highway project in Moscow, he was brutally beaten resulting in brain damage and the loss of one of his legs,The Washington Post said. He also was left unable to speak and was in a coma for several months, The Washington Post said.

Beketov was one of the first to raise concern about destruction of the Khimki forest and suspicions that local officials would profit from the highway construction project, The Washington Post said.

Shortly after Beketov brought attention to the concerns of the project, he found his dog dead on his doorstep and his car was set on fire The Washington Post said.

Police hardly investigated the crimes and ignored witnesses who offered information and surveillance videos that could have identified his attackers, The New York Time said.

Beketov used his own money to run the publication of Khimkinskaya Pravda, which circulated to about 10,000, The New York Times said.

Beketov became a hero among many and received several journalism prizes, The New York Times said.

In ABC's job report article different types of numbers can be found all throughout.

The numbers are used to describe the change in unemployment rate, how many jobs were added and average payroll gains. The numbers help explain the changes in unemployment, jobs and pay. The numbers help give the reader a better understanding and idea of the changes that have taken place over the last month. Seeing the numbers helps the reader visualize the impact of the number being described.

There are quite a bit of numbers within the entire story, but they are broken up nicely so they are not overwhelming. The numbers are brought in every few paragraphs and then described to the reader. There are also links within the story where you can click and get more information on a particular set of numbers and the information it's describing, which lessens the overwhelming of the numbers. The links also allow readers to choose what further information they want, if they want any at all.

The reporter crunched numbers in order to determine the unemployment change, the average payroll gains and the addition of jobs created. By crunching the numbers, the reporter makes it easier for the reader to read and understand. The sources of the numbers come from the Labor Department, Welch Consulting and TD Ameritrade.

Two men who escaped from the Duluth Federal Prison Camp were arrested Friday, the Star Tribune said.

Gerald Greenfield and Michael Krzyzaniak fled the prison camp on March 30, and were found at a hotel in Burnsville Friday, the Pioneer Press said. Tips had led authorities to the hotel, the Pioneer Press said.

The inmates were discovered missing the night of March 30 during a routine head count at the prison, the Star Tribune said. The prison camp has no fence and operates on the honor system, the Star Tribune said.

They checked into the hotel, about 175 miles away from the prison camp, Sunday under an alias, the Star Tribune said.

The two were arrested on federal warrants of escape from custody, and booked at the Ramsey County Jail, the Pioneer Press said.

Both were booked at the prison camp on fraudulent charges, the Pioneer Press said.

Suicide Bomber kills 5 Americans in Afghanistan

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A suicide car bomb killed five Americans and one Afghanistan doctor in Afghanistan Saturday, said the Las Angeles Times.

Three of the Americans were soldiers and two were civilians. This attack was the deadliest single attack on American forces this year, The New York Times said.

The attack occurred the day Gen. Martin Dempsey, Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, made an unexpected visit to Afghanistan, The New York Times said.

The suicide bomber detonated his car when an American convoy passed by, The New York Times said. The convoy, along with Afghan colleagues, was on their way to donate books to students in the provincial capital, the Las Angeles Times said.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the blast, but it's unclear as to whether the attack was aimed the coalition forces or the governor, who survived, The New York Times said.

Algae leads to manatee deaths in Florida

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The bloom of toxic red algae has killed 241 of Florida's endangered manatees, The Columbus Dispatch said.

The death toll this year already exceeds the previous annual record of 151, The New York Times said. The number of deaths is expected to rise because the deadly toxins from the algae has already contaminated the sea grass that the manatees eat, The Columbus Dispatch said.

The Red Tide algae appeared last year on Florida's west coast, the home to an estimated 5,000 manatees, The Columbus Dispatch said.

The toxins are usually inhaled by the manatees when they come up for air, which can lead to seizures or paralysis, causing them to drown, The Columbus Dispatch said.

Sometimes the algae can grow out of control causing the water to to red and producing a large amount of toxins, The Columbus Dispatch said. Even residents and tourists can have respiratory problems if they breath the toxins in after being on beaches near red tide algae, The New York Times said.

Building collapses in India killing and injuring many

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An eight story residential building under construction collapsed in India Thursday, killing and injuring many citizens.

The death toll has not been confirmed, as rescuers continued their search Friday. The New York Times reports at least 41 killed and 50 injured and ABC reports at least 62 killed and 70 injured. More than 20 people remain missing, and three floors have yet to be searched, ABC said.

The building collapsed in Mumbai due to illegal and bad construction, The New York Times said.

When the building collapsed between 100 and 150 were inside the building, ABC said. Many of the people who were inside the building were construction workers or residents who were living there as they worked on it, ABC said.

Local police officers have filed murder charges against the builders, who have not yet been found, The New York Times said.

Building collapses are common in India due to illegal and unsafe construction practices, The New York Times said.

Couple admits to $114B harrassment scheme

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A Brooklyn Park couple pleaded guilty Thursday to a $114 billion harassment scheme aimed towards public officials, the Star Tribune said.

Thomas Eilertson and Lisa Eilertson pleaded guilty to 12 counts of fraud each, the Pioneer Press said. The plot targeted prosecutors, a judge, a Hennepin County sheriff and other bureaucrats, the Star Tribune said.

The scheme started in 2009 when the couple's home was foreclosed, the Pioneer Press said. They began filing fake Uniform Commercial Code liens against those associated with their misfortune, the Star Tribune said. The couple said they received instructions on how to file the liens by someone online, the Pioneer Press said.

The case was referred to the Saint Paul police in February 2010 by the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office, the Star Tribune said.

The couple is scheduled for sentencing on June 7, the Star Tribune said.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from April 2013 listed from newest to oldest.

March 2013 is the previous archive.

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