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Wetterlings Ask Judge To Keep Media Out of Investigative Files

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07/31/2017 - 8:00 AM

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The parents of Jacob Wetterling, a Minnesota boy who was kidnapped and killed in 1989 in a case that remained unsolved until last year, are asking a judge to keep the media out of a privacy fight over the investigative file.

An attorney for Patty and Jerry Wetterling filed the motion in Stearns County District Court last Thursday in response to a legal challenge by several news organizations and open government groups that want full access to the voluminous case file.

The Wetterlings want to keep some of the documents private, saying they deal with personal family matters. The Star Tribune reports they've asked the judge to review the contested portions of the file before deciding whether to release the documents, and before deciding whether to let the media groups intervene in the case.

MN DNR and SCSU Are Using Grant To Clear up Talahi Woods

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07/31/2017 - 4:10 AM

MN DNR and SCSU Are Using Grant To Clear up Talahi Woods

The Talahi Woods is getting spruced up.

St. Cloud State University has received the Great River Greening Project grant of $84,830 for the Talahi Woods along the eastern bank of the Mississippi River.

According to Minnesota DNR Assistant Wildlife Manager Nick Snavely, they want to “return the area to its natural state.”

Snavely says the under story is compromised.

The woods are currently overrun by the invasive species Buckthorn, which is native to Europe. Also they hope to clear the poison ivy.

Equipment work is expected to begin this fall and continue into the winter.

BNSF Train Hits Dump Truck Monday Morning; Debris Causes Additional Damage

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07/31/2017 - 3:20 AM

BNSF Train Hits Dump Truck Monday Morning; Debris Causes Additional Damage

A dump truck was hit by a train Monday morning just south of St. Cloud.

According to Sherburne County Sheriff Joel Brott, a little after 7:30 a.m. along Highway 10 a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train hit a dump truck on 32nd Street Southeast. The debris from the collision damaged two semi-trucks and three cars traveling east.

26-year-old Allen Keene, from St. Cloud, was the only one injured and he was brought to St. Cloud Hospital for treatment.

The intersection is only controlled by stop signs.

Argument Over "MAGIC The Gathering" Leads To Stabbing Incident

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07/31/2017 - 2:50 AM

Argument Over

A Magic The Gathering card game lead to a stabbing over the weekend.

According to St. Cloud Chief of Police Blair Anderson, just after midnight Saturday a man was hit with a rubber mallet and stabbed seven times by 31-year-old Elija Creech, of St. Cloud. The argument started over a card game called Magic The Gathering. The stab wounds were in the front, sides and back of the neck and one was to his cheek.

Creech called the police after the incident and told the operator he had stabbed a man at his apartment and that the unidentified victim was going to die.

The victim was taken to St. Cloud Hospital. He was treated for substantial injuries that are not known to be life threatening at this time.

Creech is currently at Benton County Jail and is facing charges of 1st and 2nd degree assault.

Stearns County SHIP Receives Super Bowl Legacy Grant In 52 Weeks Of Giving

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07/26/2017 - 2:40 AM

Stearns County SHIP Receives Super Bowl Legacy Grant In 52 Weeks Of Giving

$50,000 is on the way for the Central MN Boys and Girls Club.

According to Stearns County Information Specialist Janet Midas, the Stearns County’s Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP) worked to gain the $50,000 grant from the Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee Legacy Fund. This grant is being used to improve the health and wellness of children in the area.

The Legacy Fund is putting on 52 Weeks of Giving Campaign where they grant 52 community projects across Minnesota over the 52 weeks leading up to the super bowl.

At the kickoff event and ribbon cutting ceremony on July 25 the Boys and Girls Club revealed they used the money to buy a trailer full of exercise equipment that will travel around to 18 different sites in the area.

More than 5,000 children could benefit from this grant.

The Central Minnesota Violent Offender Task Force is having a busy week.

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07/26/2017 - 1:00 AM

The Central Minnesota Violent Offender Task Force is having quite the busy week.

According to Commander Steve Soyka a search warrant was executed on an apartment at twelve 3rd Ave. South in Sauk Rapids.  The task force and the Waite Park Police department had received information that the resident of the apartment had a large amount of drugs and several firearms.

Investigators identified the resident as Eric Robertson, 52, of Sauk Rapids.  Robertson is a felon and ineligible to own a firearm.

Police executed the search warrant and found about 46 grams of methamphetamines, three grams of heroin, and around $3,700.  Police also arrested three women at the scene: Angelene Fischer, 28, of Princeton, Katelin Ferreell-Hernandez,18, of South Haven, and an unidentified third women.  Fischer and Farreell-Hernandez both possessed small amounts of meth at the time of the warrant.

Police also located a handgun that had been stolen from a Sauk Rapids home.

Robertson, Fischer, and Farreell-Hernandez were transported to Benton County Jail awaiting court for various charges.

Commander Soyka also says that two men from Vadnais Heights were arrested in connection with possible distribution of methamphetamines.

Thoma Thao, 30, and Yer Vang, 36, both of Vadnais heights were stopped in their vehicle near the 900 block of of Cooper Ave. South.  Thao was discovered to have multiple outstanding warrants and Vang appeared to be under the influence of and could not drive.  A K-9 unit was brought in and alerted officers to potential drugs in the vehicle.  Police searched the car and found  about three ounces of suspected meth and $800.

Thao and Vang were transported to Stearns County jail on charges of possession with intent to distribute.  Thao was also being held on his active warrants.

St. Cloud man in custody after saying he had a switchblade at a local hotel.

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07/26/2017 - 12:40 PM

A St. Cloud man is in custody after yelling that he had a switchblade at a local hotel on Tuesday.

According to Sergeant Burke of the St. Cloud Police Department, officers received a 911 from a two guests at Holiday Inn located on 37th Ave. S saying there was a man, later identified as Elakie Fale Jr., 30, of St. Cloud, banging on their door and the door of the room next door yelling that he had a switchblade and attempting to force his way into the room.

Before officers arrived on scene Fale Jr. called 911 and said that there was a bomb located in the victims room.

Officers arrived on scene and while they were interviewing the two victims Fale Jr. pulled the fire alarm and was caught as he tried to flee the scene.

According to Burke, Fale Jr. is being held in the Stearns County Jail and is facing four counts of threats of violence, two counts of disorderly conduct, tampering with a fire alarm, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

The two female victims, ages 49 and 25, were from Texas in the St. Cloud area for business.

Word War II Navy Fireman Remains Identified And Returns Home To Holdingford

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07/25/2017 - 2:50 AM

Word War II Navy Fireman Remains Identified And Returns Home To Holdingford

A Pearl Harbor naval man is finally coming home.

According to Veterans Service Officer Cory Vaske, Navy Fireman First Class Elmer Kerestes will be buried with full military honors at 10:30 a.m. on July 29 at Highland Cemetery near Holdingford.

Kerestes was killed in the attack on Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941 on the USS Oklahoma. He was one of the first Minnesotans killed in Word War 2. The Oklahoma suffered the second most casualties that day, while it was struck by multiple torpedoes and capsized killing a total of 429 servicemen.

In 1941, Navy personnel recovered the remains of the crew but unfortunately they were only able to identify 35 of the recovered remains.

In 2015 Navy personnel exhumed all unknown remains from the USS Oklahoma for analysis and earlier this year Kerestes' remains were identified through a DNA test.

Kerestes will return to Minnesota around July 27 at Minneapolis - St. Paul International Airport. He will be escorted by police, the Patriot Guard, Legion Riders and family members to the Patton-Schad Funeral home in Melrose. On the day of the funeral the procession will leave from Melrose at 9:45 a.m. and travel to Holdingford where the Highland Cemetery is located.

Northbound traffic on County Road 9 near the cemetery will be for official funeral use only and southbound traffic will be open. Parking will be at Holdingford High School and the Township shop on Highway 9. There will be shuttles from both parking sites.

Kerestes' family will have food and refreshments after the service at Holdingford American Legion.

Kerestes returns home to a town where VFW Post 5160 and a local war memorial have the honor of baring his name.

Highway 10 Gets Slowed Down By Minnesota Annual Construction Season

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07/25/2017 - 1:30 AM

Highway 10 Gets Slowed Down By Minnesota Annual Construction Season

Highway 10 to be slowed down by construction for a few days.

According to J.P. Gillach at the Minnesota Department of Transportation, starting on July 24 until July 27 Highway 10 will be reduced to one lane in the Elk River area as part of the 2017-2018 New Orono Lake Bridge project.

Eastbound traffic on Highway 10 will be reduced to a single lane for the 3 days. Westbound traffic will be two lanes with occasional lane closures occurring as needed.

Drives in the area should plan their commute accordingly.

Nuclear Incident Drill near Monticello

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07/24/2017 - 4:00 AM

People in the Monticello area may notice an increased presence of emergency services on Tuesday but should not be concerned.

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety will be running a Nuclear Incident Drill according to Minnesota Public Safety Communications Director Bruce Gordon.  Other agencies participating in the drill include the Department of Health, Department of Transportation, and Department of Pollution Control.  Also participating will be Excel Energy and the Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant.

Gordon says that the drill will test the capability of federal, state, and local agencies in the unlikely event of a nuclear plant incident. Gordon also says that in the event of an incident all the participating agencies need to work together for an effective response and to protect area residents.

There will be a variety of drill events taking place in the in proximity to the nuclear plant as well as in Wright and Sherburne counties.

Reward Offered For Information On Mink Released Case in Eden Valley

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07/21/2017 - 2:20 AM

EDEN VALLEY, Minn. (AP) - Two organizations are offering a total of $11,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever released approximately 38,000 mink from a central Minnesota farm.

The Star Tribune reports that Fur Commission USA is offering $10,000 and Tri-County Crime Stoppers is offer $1,000 for information about how more than $750,000 worth of mink were released from Lang Farms near Eden Valley earlier this week.

Fur Commission USA Executive Director Michael Whelan says thousands of the mink have died from heat, stress and dehydration. Most of the animals that died were young and hadn't yet been weaned from their mothers.

Stearns County Sheriff Don Gudmundson says as of Friday 11,000 mink were recovered alive and 15,000 mink that were recovered have died, leaving approximately 14,000 unaccounted for.

Whelan says the incident is being investigated by the Stearns County Sheriff's office and the FBI.

 

Overnight Lane Closures Coming To Highway 23 in St. Cloud and Waite Park

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07/21/2017 - 1:45 AM

Overnight Lane Closures Coming To Highway 23 in St. Cloud and Waite Park

Motorists may encounter crews, heavy equipment and delays along both directions of Highway 23 in St. Cloud and Waite Park as segments of the road are reduced to a single lane overnight July 23-28.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation says the lane closures will begin at 8 p.m. each day Sunday, July 23 through Thursday, July 27, on Highway 23 between Lincoln Avenue and Cooper Avenue in St. Cloud, and between Highway 15 and 28th Avenue S in Waite Park. Intersecting roads will also intermittently close along the two Highway 23 segments.

All lanes will open by 6:30 a.m. the following day. Motorists approaching the overnight work zones should slow down, be prepared to stop if necessary, and move over within the work zone as appropriate to give crews a safe space to work.

When complete, the project will result in a smoother ride and extend the life of the roadway.

Highway 25 Near Foley Under Construction Starting July 24

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07/20/2017 - 3:40 AM

Highway 25 Near Foley Under Construction Starting July 24

Starting Monday, motorists who travel Highway 25, north of Highway 23 in Foley, will encounter construction crews, heavy equipment and delays as segments of the road are intermittently reduced to a single lane. 

The Minnesota Departments of Transportation says the intermittent lane closures will continue through October.

Later in the project, portions of Highway 25 will be closed as crews reconstruct segments of the road, install underground pipes and make other improvements.

Highway 25 motorists should plan their travel, and expect the following: Segments of Highway 25 between Foley and Genola will be reduced to single lane July 24 through October. Some areas of Highway 25 may have rough, uneven or gravel surfaces at times.

Segments of Highway 25 will close temporarily later in the project.  All local businesses and residences will remain accessible throughout the project.

Children Rescued From Sauk River In St. Cloud Wednesday Night

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07/20/2017 - 10:00 AM

Children Rescued From Sauk River In St. Cloud Wednesday Night

Two children were safely rescued from the Sauk River Wednesday night in St. Cloud.

The Stearns County Sheriff's Office were called shortly after 8 p.m. after receiving a call of two children floating down the Sauk River toward the Mississippi River, near the Whitney Park area.

The group the kids were floating on tubes with had stopped at the Boy Scout Bridge on the north side of Whitney Park. The children's tubes broke free with the kids still on them.

Rescuers from the St. Cloud Fire Department found 17-year-old Tommy Peterson of St. Cloud a short distance from the bridge. An anonymous caller who lives on the Sauk River near Mill Pond Drive heard someone screaming and called 911. Rescuers found 7-year-old Lily'Auna Stene of St. Cloud.

The children had floated about a half a mile before help arrived. The sheriff's office says neither child was wearing a life jacket, and they were not injured.

Munsinger Clemens Gardens Puts On Annual Art Fair And Photo Contest

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07/19/2017 - 3:00 AM

Munsinger Clemens Gardens Puts On Annual Art Fair And Photo Contest

Across the river from campus there will be an art fair.

The Munsinger Clemens Gardens Art Fair will take place on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The fair will have a variety of work from artists around the state. Music will be playing all throughout the day and food vendors will be on site.

While at the Gardens attendees are encouraged to take pictures for the “Photography in the Gardens 2017 Photo Contest.” There will be an adult and youth winner in both categories of Landscape, or garden scenery, and Hardscapes, or decorative features in the garden.

Pictures must be taken at Musinger Clemens Gardens between Jan. 1 and Nov. 4 2017.  Entries are due Nov. 4 at the Lake George Municipal Complex.  An awards ceremony will take place on Nov. 18 at the St. Cloud Public Library.

Admission to the Art Fair is free and open to the public.

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