Recently in Local News Category

Facebooker Who Caused School Lockdown Found

The Facebook user who triggered the full-day lockdown of Eden Valley-Watkins schools has been tracked down by police, KARE-11 reported.

Three schools in Eden Valley-Watkins were shut down after one of the principals saw a Facebook post of a picture of the school with a status next to it that read "I see dead people."

Police tracked the IP address to a woman whose children attend one of the schools. She told authorities that she had watched the movie "The Sixth Sense" Tuesday night, leading to the post, the Star Tribune said.

KARE-11 News Director Fired

Tom Lindner, KARE-11's longtime news director, announced that he was leaving the station Wednesday, according to the Star Tribune.

Lindner, a University of Minnnesota graduate, had been the news director since 1996, the Pioneer Press said.

"I was simply told that they wanted a change," Lindner told Star Tribune staff in a phone conversation. He said that it was not his decision.

John Remes, KARE's general manager, wouldn't give any specifics about Lindner's departure, but said that the decision did not come from KARE's corporate parent Gannett.

Woman Critically Injured After Colliding with Cow

A Lacrosse, Wisc. woman was critically injured Saturday night when her van collided with a cow in Southern Minnesota, KARE 11 said.

Authorities said that Svetlana Schmitz, 36, was traveling westbound on I-90 south of Lewiston when her van hit a cow and rolled, the Pioneer Press reported.

Schmitz sustained serious injuries and was transported to St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester. The only passenger in the car, 62-year-old Tatyana Grigorieskaya, had only minor injuries.

Minn. Lawmakers Approve Budget

Minn. lawmakers in both the House and Senate have approved a two-year budget for agriculture agencies and programs and have sent it to Gov. Mark Dayton, the Star Tribune reported.

The governor is expected to sign the bill because it is closely in line with his own budget proposals, KARE 11 said.

The bill includes a final $13.7 million payment to ethanol producers, which the state intends to phase out. It also commits $79 million to agriculture programs.

The sponsors of the bill said it was a good example of bipartisan cooperation.

Trial set for BWCA Cell Tower

A five-day trial will begin this week in Hennepin County disputing whether a 450-foot cell phone tower should be built in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, the Star Tribune reported.

The Minneapolis-based conservation group Friends of the Boundary Waters, who is taking AT&T to court in an effort to block the construction, argues that the tower will leave a permanent human footprint in the pristine wilderness, KSTP said.

AT&T argues that the service tower would provide service in case of emergencies and to the residents of the wilderness area, which could mean the difference between life and death if something went wrong in the remote area. They also plan to present support from local emergency crews and residents.

The conservation group counter-argues that studies from AT&T itself have shown they could provide nearly as much coverage with two smaller 199-foot towers. The 450-foot tower AT&T has in the works would sit on a 150-foot ridge, making it nearly 600 feet higher than the surrounding landscape.

Grocery Store Shooting Victims Identified

The identities of two people who were shot in the break room of Festival Foods in Brooklyn Park were released Sunday, the Star Tribune said.

Abigail M. Fedeli, 20, and her boyfriend Michael Habte, 21, were in the break room of the grocery store when a co-worker who was off-duty came in and shot them out of jealousy, FOX News said. The shooter then fled to Minneapolis where he took his own life near the Washington Avenue Bridge. His name has not been released yet.

Fedeli died at the scene from a single gunshot wound to the neck, and Habte died in surgery at the North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale, according to the Hennepin County medical examiner.

The victims and the shooter reportedly had known each other for years, and one employee said that the workers there were "close-knit." The Fedeli family released a statement Sunday morning saying that "An extraordinarily bright, beautiful, and loving part of our lives has been senselessly taken away from us."

Woman dies in St. Joseph Fire

A woman died in a fire at her mobile home early Saturday morning in St. Joseph, the Star Tribune said.

According to St. Joseph Fire Chief Jeff Taufen, a neighbor called the police department to report seeing flames. According to the Pioneer Press, Taufen and other neighbors said the woman was the only person living in the trailer home.

The woman's identification has not been released pending notification of family members. The cause of the fire was unknown.

Jennie-O recalls 55,000 pounds of turkey burgers

The Jennie-O Turkey Store in Willmar has recalled 55,000 pounds of turkey burgers because they may have been contaminated with salmonella, the Star Tribune reported Sunday.

The recall includes 4-pound boxes of frozen, raw turkey burgers labeled as "All Natural Turkey Burgers with seasonings Lean White Meat." They were distributed across the nation in Sam's Club stores, Kare 11 said.

The products were packaged on Nov. 23, and over the past four months 12 people have become ill in states such as Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Washington and Wisconsin.

Maplewood Man Dies In Accident Near Airport

A man from Maplewood was killed Thursday in a car accident near the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport according to Kare 11 news.

31-year-old Twamar Terry was killed when the Chevy pickup he was a passenger in crossed the median on Highway 5, resulting in a crash with 3 other vehicles. The other injuries were minor or non-life-threatening.

Boy, 4, Killed When Father Accidentally Ran Over Him

A Hubbard County boy, 4, was killed Friday when his father accidentally backed over him plowing snow, Kare 11 reported.

According to relatives, Kyle Vredenburg was riding his bike near the area his father was plowing. His sister tried to call him back, but his father accidentally ran over him, the Star Tribune said.

The Hubbard County Sheriff Cory Auke said no charges would be pressed for such a tragic event.

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