December 2010 Archives

Analysis: Records-CAR

The Star Tribune article "Collision in the Courts" investigates BNSF Corp., and judicial penalties it has received for misconduct.

Paul McEnroe and Tony Kennedy uncovered court records that show BNSF and its attorneys destroyed evidence and other obstructive practices in four court cases. The Star Tribune and Pro Publica, a non-profit new organization, reviewed 200 lawsuits against the company.

Both news organizations needed to identify cases against BNSF, and how the judges reacted to the company.

The Star Tribune was fair, and allowed BNSF to respond to the investigation.

BNSF said in a statement to the Star Tribune, "It is highly misleading, unfair and plain wrong for the Star Tribune to pick these few instances to paint and malign BNSF as a company with corporate culture or failing to follow the rules of judicial conduct."

McEnroe and Kennedy needed to understand how to read court documents and what they said. Therefore, they would not misinterpret or misrepresent the fillings against BNSF.

They also needed to know how and where to find the court documents.

Elizabeth Edwards laid to rest

Elizabeth Edwards died Tuesday after her six-year battle with breast cancer. She was 61.

"Today we have lost the comfort of Elizabeth's presence but she remains the heart of this family," the Edwards family said in a statement. "We love her and will never know anyone more inspiring or full of life," according to the People magazine.

Mourners gathered outside a church Saturday in Edenton, N.C. to remember the strength and courage of former presidential candidate John Edwards' wife, according to USA Today.

The service was held at Edenton United Methodist Church, and she will be laid to rest next to her son Wade, who died in a car accident in 1996, according to USA Today.

House fire claims life of St. Thomas Student

A University of St. Thomas student died early Saturday in a house fire as he and three other students were asleep.

The fire department arrived at the house at 1795 Selby Ave. around 3:15 a.m., and the house was engulfed by flames, the St. Paul Fire Marshal Steve Zaccard said to the Pioneer Press.

Three students were asleep on the second level, and one student was asleep on the first level. He died in the fire, according to the Pioneer Press.

The three students jumped from the second-story window, and they were taken to Regions Hospital in St. Paul, according to the Star Tribune.

They suffered smoke inhalation and minor injuries, according to the Star Tribune.

It is not clear how the fire started, but preliminary indications show the fire started outside the house, Zaccard said to the Star Tribune.

The name of the victim has not been released, according to the Star Tribune.

Prince Charles' car attacked during student protest

Prince Charles' car was attacked Thursday in London during student protests about college tuition increases.

The prince and his wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, were unharmed as the car had paint thrown at it on Regent Street, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The attack left the Duchess of Cornwall shaken, according to The Telegraph.

A car window was also cracked as the couple was traveling to the Palladium Theatre, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

British Parliament recently voted to allow universities to triple students' tuition fees, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Madoff's eldest son found dead in apparent suicide

Bernard Madoff's eldest son was found dead in his Manhattan apartment Saturday.

Mark Madoff, 46, was found dead on the second anniversary of the day his father was arrested for the ponzi scheme that effected people around the world, according to the New York Times.

Madoff was discovered hanging from a ceiling pipe in his SoHo apartment by his wife's father, Mark London, a prominent lawyer, according to the Star Tribune.

Madoff's "2-year-old song was asleep in an adjoining bedroom," Deputy Police Commissioner Paul J. Browne said to the New York Times.

Stephanie, Madoff's wife, was in Florida with their other son, when she became concerned about her husband after receiving an e-mail from him Friday night, according to the Star Tribune.

Martin Flumenbaum, Madoff's lawyer, said in a statement, "Mark Madoff took his own life today. This is a terrible and unnecessary tragedy," according to the New York Times.

Mark Dayton declared gubernatorial winner, Emmer concedes

Former Sen. Mark Dayton was declared Minnesota's next governor Wednesday after opponent Tom Emmer conceded the election.

A statewide recount showed that Dayton won the most votes, and he will be the first democratic governor since 1986, according to Minnesota Public Radio.

The recount did not allow Emmer to close the gap between him and his opponent, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Emmer said to reporters on Wednesday, "I do not believe a delay in the seating of the next governor will unite us or help us move the state forward," according to the Los Angeles Times.

Dayton received 8,770 votes more than his opponent, according to the Star Tribune.

Bus carrying U Mass students crashes, 17 injured

A bus carrying University of Massachusetts students crashed Friday in Vermont on its way to Canada.

A group of three buses were traveling through Vermont for a ski trip, when one of the buses traveling in the group veered right on Interstate 91, and slid down a deep embankment around 4 p.m., according to the Boston Globe.

Of the 45 people on the bus, only 17 were injured, according to the Star Tribune.

The students were all released from the hospital by 9 p.m., according to the Boston Globe.

Stephanie Dasaro, a spokeswoman for the Vermont State Police, said it is unclear how the crash occurred, and a crash reconstruction team was at the scene investigating, according to the Star Tribune.

Actor refuses to turn phone off, escorted off plane

Josh Duhamel was taken off an airplane at New York's LaGuardia Airport after failing to shut off his Blackberry.

Duhamel, 38, pulled out his Blackberry and began texting while on the runway, according to People magazine.

A flight attendant asked the actor three times to turn the device off before take off, according to the Washington Post.

Passengers on the plane described Duhamel as "very rude," which angered the flight attendant, who redirected the plane back to the gate, according to the New York Daily News.

Minneapolis, St. Paul declare snow emergency

Minneapolis and St. Paul declared a snow emergency Saturday after a winter storm dumped up to 10 inches of snow Friday in some Twin Cities communities.

Snow plows will begin clearing roads Saturday at 9 p.m., according to the Star Tribune.

Parking is not allowed on either side of Minneapolis snow emergency routes until 8 a.m., or until the road has been completely plowed, according to the Pioneer Press.

As for St. Paul, streets designated as "Night Plow Route" will be cleared, and beginning Sunday at 8 a.m., all non-posted residential streets will be plowed, according to the Pioneer Press.

Illegally parked cars face the possibility of being impounded or fines, according to the Minnesota Daily.

Snowy conditions cause plane to slide off MSP runway

A Delta Air Lines jet slid off the runway Friday at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport as several inches of snow fell across the Twin Cities.

The Boeing 757 carrying 189 people slipped off the taxiway around 7 p.m., according to the Pioneer Press.

None of the passengers were injured, according to the Associated Press.

The pilot called for assistance after the plane's left side landing gear was stuck in the grass, according to KARE 11.

Nearly 40 regional flights to other Midwest cities were canceled Friday by Delta Air Lines, according to KARE 11.

Russian Jet Makes Emergency Landing, Skids off Runway

A passenger jet skidded off the runway after making an emergency landing at Moscow airport because of engine failure.

The Dagestan Airlines plane skidded off the snowy runway at Domodedovo Airport, according to The Guardian.

The plane slammed into buildings after skidding off the runway, and it killed two people while injuring 83, according to National Public Radio.

Sergei Izvolsky, a federal aviation agency spokesman, said the cause of the engine failure is unknown, according to NPR.

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