April 26, 2009

University students riot in Dinkytown

A party on Spring Jam weekend in Dinkytown near the University of Minnesota campus turned into a riot on Saturday night, according to KSTP TV.

The party, on 7th Street and 14th Avenue in Minneapolis, started around 8 p.m. and did not end until early morning hours on Sunday, KSTP TV reported.

More than 60 police officers called to the scene used tear gas, pepper spray and smoke grenades in order to control the crowd of and estimated 400 to 500 people, KSTP TV reported.

When police arrived some students threw bottles and rocks at them. Many homes and cars in the area were damaged during the riot, according to KSTP TV.

At least six people were arrested but no one was seriously injured, KSTP TV reported.

In a statement released by the university, the University of Minnesota Vice Provost for Student Affairs Jerry Rinehart spoke about the incident.

"Last night's events near Dinkytown, where a block party got out of control, were an unacceptable display of lawless behavior. This kind of conduct is not reflective of our student body or the University of Minnesota community," Rinehart said. "Recently, we strengthened our student conduct code to be applicable to off-campus situations such as this. We intend to use that code to its fullest as more is learned about those who were arrested and involved in this incident."

April 19, 2009

Ashton Kutcher beats CNN on Twitter

Ashton Kutcher, 31, is best known for his acting on "That 70s Show" and his marriage to Demi Moore, 15 years his senior. But not anymore. (FOX News)

Kutcher became the first Twitter user to gain more than one million "followers" on Twitter late Thursday evening, according to Los Angeles Times.

For a few days before Thursday, Kutcher had been racing CNN's breaking news feed ( with his own account ( to become the first "Twitter Millionaire," FOX News reported.

Just before midnight on Thursday, Kutcher's account reached the final number. Kutcher broadcast a live stream of himself, Moore, and friends watching the numbers, according to FOX News.

The group being broadcast celebrated with champagne and cheers as the one million mark was reached, FOX News reported.

Kutcher said he would donate 10,000 mosquito nets to the medical charity Malaria No More if he won. Just after the number was announced, Kutcher flashed a check for $100,000, the presumed amount for the nets, made out to the charity, FOX News reported.

CNN also declared on Tuesday that win or lose, they would match Kutcher's donation to the charity, according to FOX News.

Zac Efron soars in "17 Again"

Zac Efron's latest movie, "17 Again," was in first place at the box offices, taking in $24.1 million, according to Reuters.

The debut was about $4 million more than analysts projected, according to USA Today.

Even the distributor, Warner Bros. told Reuters that the earnings were better than expected.

In the movie, Efron plays a dispirited 27-year-old family man who becomes 17 again, and gets to relive his high school glory days, Reuters reported.

This signals yet another No. 1 for Efron, who was in "Hairspray" and was the lead in the "High School Musical" franchise, USA Today reported.

April 9, 2009

Dead man re-elected as mayor of Missouri town

The mayor of Winfield, Mo., was re-elected for a fourth term on Tuesday, nearly a month after his death.

Ballots had already been printed and absentee voting had begun when Harry Stonebraker died of a heart attack on March 11. He was 69, the BBC reported.

When the town voted for their mayor, he was the clear winner with 206 votes, or 90 percent. Alderman Bernie Panther was his competition and held the other 23 votes, according to the Associated Press.

Lincoln County Clerk Elaine Lust told the Associated Press that she was not surprised Stonebraker won. He had been a popular mayor who led the community after flooding damaged houses and farmland in 2008, Lust said.

Stonebraker had been a lifelong resident of the Winfield area, which is roughly 50 miles north-west of St. Louis. He was a retired construction superintendent and was serving his third two-year term as mayor when he died, the Associated Press reported.

March 28, 2009

13-year-old boy bites 11 people, blames "Twilight"

A 13-year-old McCombs Middle School student has been accused of biting 11 students at the Des Moines school, the Des Moines Register reported Thursday.

The boy has been accused of biting the students between Feb. 10 and March 13, according to a Des Moines police report. He was referred to a juvenile detention center.

The case was brought to Des Moines police's attention after the boy bit a 13-year-old female on the right hand at a track meet. Vice President Connie Sloan of McCombs Middle School investigated the incident and found 10 other students that the boy had bitten who had not come forward.

The police contacted the boys father, who said that his son was biting students because of the movie "Twilight," and that he had no intention of hurting anyone, the Des Moines Register reported.

The boy was given a delayed referral to juvenile court on an assault charge, according to the Des Moines Register.

"Twilight" is a recent, popular vampire movie with tween and teen audiences.

Another source that provided similar information: Softpedia News

March 8, 2009

NASA clears shuttle for liftoff on Wednesday

NASA managers cleared the space shuttle Discovery Friday for its upcoming launch to the International Space Station on Wednesday. Reuters

The shuttle is on a construction mission and is scheduled for liftoff at 9:20 p.m. Wednesday from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., MSNBC reported.

The fourth and final set of U.S.-manufactured solar wing panels will be delivered to the station by the shuttle, aiding in the $100 billion project that has been under construction by 16 nations for more than a decade, according to Reuters.

The station assembly, which has been a large part of U.S. human space exploration for almost 30 years, is scheduled to be completed next year by NASA.

The launch, originally scheduled for Feb. 12, was postponed due to safety concerns with the ship’s fuel pressure valves, MSNBC reported.

This is the 125th shuttle mission and the first of five planned for this year, according to Reuters. It is scheduled to last 14 days.