Recently in Local News Category

Pawlenty names new Ramsey County District Attorney

Gov. Tim Paulenty named an assistant U.S. attorney in Minneapolis to fill the vacant Ramsey County District Attorney postion Thursday.

Robyn Millenacker, 48, will fill the position that Micheal Fetch left when he retired in October, according to the Star Tribune.

She has served as law clerk to the U.S. Magistrate Janice Symchych. She has also worked in a high profile law firm in California. She served as an assistant U.S. attorney in California, according to the Pioneer Press.

She earned her bachelor;s and law degrees at the University of Minnesota in 1984 and 1988, respectively, according to the Star Tribune.

She is originally from Rochester and now lives in North Oaks with her husband and four children, according to the Pioneer Press.

St. Paul high school will have class of 2011

The St. Paul school board decided Wednesday evening to allow junior class at Arlington High School to graduate in the spring of 2011.

Under a measure by the school board Arlington High School juniors will be the final graduating class, according to the Star Tribune.

Students and parents at the Meeting Wednesday night also lobbied for the sophomore class to graduate in 2012, but that was turned down by the school board, according to the Pioneer Press.

At least 150 students have to stay at the school for the plan to go into full motion. They would be sharing a building with the incoming Washington Technology Middle School students, according to the Pioneer Press.

Arlington is not the only school that is closing its doors. About eight other schools in the St. Paul area are either closing or combining with other schools, according to the Star Tribune.

First game at Target Field is a win

The Twins opened-up their new ballpark with a win against the Boston Red Sox on Monday.

This was the first time in the history of the Twins that they opened up a new stadium with a win. Their Previous stadium openings, Metropolitan Stadium and the Metrodome, resulted in losses, according to the Pioneer Press.

"It's definitely a special place, and I'm glad it's here," catcher Joe Mauer said, according to the Star Tribune.

The Twins defeated the Red Sox 5-2 with help by Jason Kubel, who hit the first regular season home run, and Carl Pavano, who had the first victory in the new ballpark for the Twins, according to the Star Tribune.

4 candidates left for St. Paul police chief

The race for the next police chief of St. Paul came down to four finalists last Thursday.

After interviews with an advisory panel last week, Cmdr. Todd Axtell, Senior Cmdr. Colleen Luna, Senior Cmdr. Bill Martinez and Assistant Chief Thomas Smith are still in the running to become the next police chief of St. Paul, according to the Pioneer Press.

A fifth candidate dropped withdrew their name from the race, they have not been identified. Usually St. Paul Police hires their chiefs from within, according to the Star Tribune.

Public forums, hosted by St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman, will be held April 26 and 27 at Arlington High School, with the latter one being held at Johnson High School. People will be able to submit written questions to the finalists, which will then be answered at each forum, according to the Pioneer Press.

Individual interviews will be conducted by Coleman after the forums, which will then led to his final decision in mid-May, according to the Pioneer Press.

Teenager pleads guilty to armed robbery

A teenager plead guilty last week to two counts of first-degree aggravated robbery, which occurred Jan. 25. One of the robberies happened on the University of Minnesota campus.

Derrell Jacori Cole, 17, was sentenced to a juvenile program, probation, and stayed prison time Monday after he pleaded guilty to his charges. One of the guilty pleas was in connection with the robbery of two students at Moos Towers, according to the Minnesota Daily.

Police say that Cole crimes he committed on Jan. 25 are also in connection with the shooting of U of M student Timothy Schumacher. They are still investigating the incident, according to the Minnesota Daily.

Cole will not have to serve six years in prison, if he does not get into anymore trouble before he turns 21, according to the Star Tribune.

A 21-year-old was arrested in February with Cole, about two weeks after the robberies, but was eventually released without being charged, according to the Star Tribune.

Choi resigns as St. Paul city attorney

St. Paul City Attorney John Choi resigned Tuesday, due to his current campaign for Ramsey County attorney.

Choi resigned because he did not want his office's image to become a liability during his campaign. "I don't want even the perception that the advice we give or actions we take to be about me running," Choi said, according to the Pioneer Press.

Choi will still practice law as a civil attorney for the McGrann Shea Carnival Straughn & Lamb Firm, according to the Star Tribune.

Some people might know Choi as the face of St. Paul, when referring to the arrests that were made after the 2008 Republican National Convention. Choi also changed a state law to allow civil injunctions to be filed by cities against criminal gang members, according to the Pioneer Press.

What is the world coming to?

A St. Paul man was charged with assault for beating up a quadruple amputee because she was blocking his view of a t.v.

According to police officials, Jacoby Laquan Smith, 33, was charged with fifth-degree assault and interfering with a 911 call after he got angry with his roommate and beat her up because she blocked his view of the t.v., according to the Pioneer Press.

The victim told police officers that Smith threw her to the floor and punched her in the face more than 10 times. When the she tried to call 911, Smith took her cell phone away from her, according to the Star tribune.

The victim persuaded Smith to take her to a nearby gas station, so that she could put ice on her face. Once Smith overheard that the police might of been called, he fled the scene, according to the Star Tribune.

The woman was "very frightened" of Smith because he had a key to their apartment and her cell phone, according to the Pioneer Press.

Hecker taken into custody

Denny Hecker, a once-giant in the automotive sales industry, was taken into custody Tuesday by court officials for failing to provide adequate financial information for case dealing with his second wife.

Judge Jay Quam ordered Hennepin County sheriff's deputies to arrest Hecker because he was not able to make alimony payments to Sandra Hecker, according to the Star Tribune.

"I don't like doing this," Judge Quam told Hecker. "But I am going to take you into custody to motivate you," according to the Star Tribune.

This came after Hecker testified for about an hour on the stand. He mentioned difficulty raising money for his defense, the financial debt he accrued over the years and problems with family life, according to the Pioneer Press.

"I have never had an intention problem to pay. I have had an ability to pay problem," Hecker said, during his hearing, accordng to the Star Tribune.

Hecker is scheduled to make another appearance in court on Tuesday dealing with matters involving his fourth wife, Tamitha, according to the Pioneer Press.

Tattoo regulation

Rep. Julie Bunn, DFL St. Paul, recently authored a bill that would require body art establishments in the state to be regulated by the Minnesota Department of Health.

In the bill Bunn called for certain standards that must be met by the establishments. Sterilization for needles, gloves for the body artists and the correct metals for body art jewelry were some of the things mentioned, according to the Star Tribune.

If the bill is passed, then the Minnesota Department of Health would be responsible for licensing body art establishments, according to the Minnesota Daily.

The new legislation is mainly aimed towards creating consequences for establishments that don't adhere to regulations, according to the Daily.

"Rep. Bunn is willing to understand our industry," Jon Boy said, owner of Dinkytown Tattoo and a tattoo artist of nine years, according to the Daily.

The bill was reviewed Wednesday by a health and human services House committee. It was passed by two other panels earlier in the year, according to the Star Tribune.

St. Paul schools facing budget cuts

The St. Paul school board announced Tuesday that they will cut $33 million from their budget beginning next school year.

The announcement comes after board members were faced with fixing the current $27 million budget gap that the school district is facing, according to the Star Tribune.

Everything from closing buildings to shutting down 10 school pools was mentioned in the proposed plan. More than a third of the cuts would come from centrally administered programs and services, according to the Pioneer Press.

The recent deficit on enrollment that has resulted in reduced student aid and rising costs are some of the things that officials placing the blame on, which is a main reason why the school district is facing such a deficit, according to the Star Tribune.

More specifics about the proposed budget cuts will be mentioned at a board meeting on May 4, which will then be followed by a series of community meetings, according to the Pioneer Press.

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