April 29, 2007

Vikings take Peterson from Oklahoma

The StarTribune.com reports the Minnesota Vikings selected runningback Adrian Peterson out of Oklahoma. The Vikings set their sights on Peterson after his quiet April 13 visit to Winter Park. Peterson's 12 touchdowns in seven games last season matched the Vikings' total for all runners in 16 games of the 2006 season.

Kare 11.com reports more than 3,000 Vikings fans gathered at Winter Park Headquarters in Eden Prairie to watch the NFL draft Saturday. The Vikings fans were very happy with their selection of Peterson. Peterson will be backing up runningback Chester Taylor.

Zachary March liked the Peterson pick. He says, "I think that was a good pick. We didn't need a quarterback since we got Tavaris Jackson."

James J. Hill Sapphire sold

The StarTribune.com reports the gem's sale for a record high bid of $3.064 million at a New York City auction earlier this week, however, indisputably left officials of the Minnesota Historical Society in a pleasant state of shock at their unexpected windfall. James J. Hill gave his wife the 22.66 carat sapphire on Dec. 24, 1886.

"We're still reeling from the news," said Nina Archabal, Historical Society director.

Myfoxtwincities.com reports the money will be put toward the Hill House endowment, meant to preserve the home, which is listed as a National Historic Landmark.

The sale of the Kashmir sapphire set two world auction records – top sale price and record price per carat for a sapphire.



Car bomb kills 58

The StarTribune.com reports a car bomb exploded Saturday in the Shiite holy city of Karbala as people were heading for evening prayers, killing at least 58 and wounding many near some of the country's most sacred shrines.

There were nine U.S. troops who were killed in the explosion.

Latimes reports 343 soldiers have been killed, 53 percent higher than the 224 killed in the first four months of last year, according to the Web site icasualties.org.

The attack comes in the third month of the U.S.-led military coalition's security crackdown and in the midst of an intensifying political struggle in Washington, D.C., over the war.



April 28, 2007

St. Paul mayor gets rear-ended

Wcco.com reports a woman rear-ended St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman's car about 9 p.m. Thursday. No one was hurt. Police said the mayor's unmarked Ford Crown Victoria town car was stopped at a red light on Summit Avenue when it was rear-ended by a Honda sedan.

Police said the 22-year-old St. Paul woman who was driving the Honda had a blood-alcohol content of 0.26 percent, far higher than the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

Startribune.com reports after the accident, Abbie Raymond, 22, of St. Paul was booked into the Ramsey County jail on a gross misdemeanor charge of driving while under the influence of alcohol. Coleman was leaving a forum at Mount Olivet Baptist Church in St. Paul when he was hit.



Gas prices to hit $4?

koaa.com reports gasoline prices have shot up again.

"Unfortunately gas has gone up 29 cents on average over last month," according to Eric Escondero - spokesperson for AAA Colorado. AAA reports Colorado gas prices are still two cents below the national average for the 25 th consecutive week, and only four cents higher than what they were one year ago.

Startribune.com reports all across the nation people and companies are fearing higher gas prices, but they soon might be jumping to new highs. Some fear $4-a-gallon gas looms soon.

"I am in the camp that we will go higher, perhaps a lot higher. I think we are one disruption or problem away from $4-a-gallon gasoline," said Phil Flynn, a veteran oil analyst for Alaron Trading, a Chicago-based commodities trading company.



April 20, 2007

The NFL Draft and Marijuana

ESPN.com reports three players widely regarded as top-10 picks in the upcoming NFL draft, including Georgia Tech wide receiver Calvin Johnson, have admitted to previously using marijuana, Pro Football Weekly reports. Johnson, Clemson defensive end Gaines Adams and Louisville defensive tackle Amobi Okoye admitted using the drug. The players admitted using during college at February's NFL scouting combine.

"I doubt it will have any effect whatsoever," said Gailey, a former Dallas Cowboys head coach. "I think he's a great young man who probably did it one time to see what it was like and told the truth."

The Gridiron Gateway.com reports according to a player personnel director from another team, players are encouraged to be totally forthcoming on even the most minor events as they approach jobs worth millions of dollars. As long as the players do not use in the NFL they will have no problems.



Somalis deal with deaths in Mogadishu

The USAtoday.com reports at least 113 civilians have been killed during three days of heavy fighting in the Somali capital, a Somali human rights group said Friday. Between Wednesday and 2 p.m. Friday, 229 people were wounded, said Sudan Ali Ahmed, chairman of the decade-old Elman Human Rights Organization.

"We condemn both sides of the conflict and call on them to immediately stop the mass massacre in the capital," Ahmed told The Associated Press.

Theage.com reports the streets in Mogadishu are bare because of the fighting. People have either fled from the city or they are hiding. In provinces round the city, tens of thousands of refugees waited under trees or beside roads.

At packed Mogadishu hospitals, the injured screamed and doctors struggled to help the wounded after four days of clashes between troops and insurgents.



Pioneer Press battles in court with Star Tribune

WCCO.com reports the Pioneer Press claims former publisher Par Ridder improperly shared insider information when he was named publisher of the Star Tribune last month. The Pioneer Press lawsuit claimed Ridder e-mailed financial data to other Star Tribune executives after he switched jobs.

"They contain virtually every facet of financial information that one would ever want to know about one's opposition," Pioneer Press attorney Daniel Oberdorfer said in court.

The StarTribune.com reports a Ramsey County District Court judge has granted a request from the Pioneer Press that they be allowed to search at least a dozen computers owned or used by Star Tribune employees over concerns that the Minneapolis paper obtained its main competitor's confidential advertising information.

"We understand the judge's decision to preserve the status quo until all the evidence can be gathered and heard, and we will fully comply with the order," Star Tribune spokesman Ben Taylor said in a statement. "We're anxious to get a full hearing on the merits and look forward to presenting our case as soon as possible."



Double homicide in Minneapolis

The Startribune reports a 19-year-old Minneapolis man is charged with first-degree murder in the robbery-homicide of two men in a North Side alley Tuesday night. A girl, 17, and a boy, 15, also face charges. The girl is identified as Mattea Thurman, who lives on the same block where the killings occurred.

The victims were on their way home from a nearby bar when each was shot once in the head behind a home in the 4700 block of N. 6th St.

WCCO.com reports charges were expected Friday in the execution-style double homicide. Minneapolis police Capt. Mike Martin said the homicide victims were picked at random, didn't know the suspects and weren't involved in anything illegal that would have led to violence.

"Who does that to people?" Christianson's brother David Wiener said.



Cho fit profile of a school shooter

The StarTribune reports Cho Seung-Hui, the man who was responsible for the shootings at Virginia Tech, fit the profile a person who needed help. His background indicates he was a stereotypical school shooter, a painfully awkward, picked-on young man who lashed out with unbelievable fury at the world he believed was out to get him.

"In virtually every regard, Cho is prototypical of mass killers that I've studied in the past 25 years," said Northeastern University criminal justice professor James Alan Fox, co-author of 16 books on crime. "That doesn't mean, however, that one could have predicted his rampage."

The Kansascity.com reports Cho sent up warning signs with his strange behavior long in advance.

the 23-year-old South Korean immigrant was sent to a psychiatric hospital and pronounced an imminent danger to himself. He was accused of stalking two women and photographing female students in class with his cell phone. His violence-filled writings were so disturbing that he was removed from one class, and professors begged him to get counseling.

High school classmates said he was teased and picked on, apparently because of shyness and his mumbly way of speaking.



April 13, 2007

New Jersey Governor in serious car accident

CBSnews.com reports New Jersey Gov. Jon S. Corzine was in critical condition Friday, but expected to recover, after his vehicle was hit on the Garden State Parkway and crashed into a guardrail, breaking his leg and collarbone, 12 ribs, his sternum and fracturing a vertebrae. Authorities are still looking for the other driver involved who is to be blame for everthing. A Corzine spokesman said Friday it doesn't appear that the governor was wearing a seatbelt during the crash.

NYTimes.com reports Corzine was flown to Cooper University Hospital in Camden, where he received seven units of blood and a metal rod in his leg during a two-hour operation that ended about 11:30 p.m.

“He has what we call multisystemic injuries,? Robert F. Ostrum, Cooper’s director of orthopedic trauma, who led the surgical team, said in a midnight briefing for reporters here. “Injuries to his chest, lungs, to his legs, and he lost a significant amount of blood.?

Mr. Corzine was on his way to Drumthwacket, the governor’s mansion in Princeton, for a meeting between the Rutgers women’s basketball team and Don Imus, who made rude comments about the team during his morning talk show.



Indonesian plane turns back from India because of missile threat

Reuters.com reports two Garuda Indonesia flights heading to Saudi Arabia had to change course and return to Jakarta due to a missile test carried out by India this week, an Indonesian foreign ministry spokesman said on Friday.

"We are trying to attain clarification from India about notification," said foreign ministry spokesman Kristianto Legowo. "We will immediately seek clarification from the Indian ambassador here."

The StarTribune reports the plane was carrying 413 passengers returned to Jakarta and took off again for Jeddah seven hours later. Another plane had to delay its departure because of the incident. The Agni III missile, which is designed to reach 1,900 miles, was launched from Wheeler Island off the eastern state of Orissa and is said to be capable of carrying up to a 300-kiloton nuclear warhead.



Browns Valley receives grant for flood

Kare11.com reports the city of Browns Valley will receive a state grant for $264,000 as the western Minnesota town continues to clean up after a big spring flood. The grant will help pay for clearing debris and repairing public facilities, with $203,000 going toward fixing city streets.

Minnesota always comes together to help communities recover from natural disasters and this is another good piece of assistance," Gov. Tim Pawlenty said in a news release Thursday.

The StarTribune reports, in Browns Valley on March 14 an ice jam on the Little Minnesota River caused flooding that forced about 100 people from their homes in the town of 650. Pawlenty said other state agencies are looking for help for the community to recover from the flood.



Girl stabs her newborn 135 times

The StarTribune reports a 17-year-old Oakdale girl told police she gave birth on the laundry room floor early Monday, then panicked and stabbed the baby girl after seeing her move a finger. Investigators found the baby in a bloody garbage bag outside the teen's home with 135 stab wounds, most of the punctures were in the chest. The Ramsey County medical examiner's office said the baby was born alive and bled to death.

Nicole M. Beecroft was charged with first-degree premeditated murder Thursday in Washington County District Court.

ABC.com reports Beercroft's mom told police she did not know her overweight daughter was pregnant. Authorities were tipped off Tuesday when an anonymous caller told police that a cashier at a Cub Foods grocery store in St. Paul had given birth to a stillborn baby and threw it in the garbage at her home.

"She kills the baby and now her life will be changed forever," said Washington County Attorney Doug Johnson.



Imus apologizes for comments aimed at Rutgers women's basketball team

The StarTribune reports the Rutgers women's basketball team accepted radio host Don Imus' apology Friday for insulting them on the air, saying that he deserves a chance to move on but that the team hopes Imus will learn from his mistake.

"We still find his statements to be unacceptable, and this is an experience that we will never forget," coach C. Vivian Stringer read from a team statement a day after the team met personally with Imus and his wife.

NyTimes reports CBS finally after a week decided to fire Imus for the remarks he made about the Rutger's team. Mr. Imus, who has been broadcasting his program for more than 30 years, no longer has a home on either national radio or television.

Both CBS and MSNBC, who carried the show, were under pressure from women's groups and from black activists groups that were trying to get rid of the Imus. The decision to fire Imus came right before him and the Rutgers team met for Imus' apology at the governor's mansion in Princeton.