MINNESOTA NEWS BRIEFS: One Dead, One Critical After New York Mills Shooting
NEW YORK MILLS, Minn. -- One person is dead and another critically injured after a shooting last night (Wed) just outside of New York Mills in northwestern Minnesota.
A 21-year-old woman called 911 saying shots had been fired. Responding officers found two men with gunshot wounds and one, a 20-year-old, was dead. The sheriff’s office says a 23-year-old shot the other man and then turned the gun on himself. Names are being withheld.
Kandiyohi County Sheriff's officials have arrested two teenagers in connection with the death of a grandmother this week in Willmar. 19-year-old Brok Junkermeier and a 16-year-old male, both from Willmar, are in custody. It's believed 79-year-old Lila Warwick of Willmar was killed during a burglary attempt. Authorities say Warwick suffered multiple stab wounds and neck injuries consistent with strangulation. Sheriff's officials doing a welfare check Monday found the woman dead inside her home, where she lived alone. Funeral services for Warwick are Saturday at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Willmar.
A Meeker County man is dead after his SUV collided with semi Wednesday afternoon near Paynesville. The State Patrol says 76-year-old Frederic Brown of Darwin crossed the centerline on Highway 4 and struck the rig head-on. Brown died at the scene. The 28-year-old Paynesville man driving the semi was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The crash closed the highway for several hours.
Among the same-sex couples tying the knot just after midnight in Minnesota, 19 couples were married at the Clay County Courthouse in Moorhead early this morning. Similar ceremonies were held elsewhere in the state as it became legal for gay couples to marry. 128 invited guests jammed a courtroom at the Clay County Courthouse for the historic ceremony. Several other county courthouses in the state, as well as the Mall of America's Chapel of Love also held ceremonies.
A bipartisan bill on federally-subsidized student loans previously approved by the U.S. Senate has now passed the House and is headed to the President's desk. The measure lowers interest rates to 3.9 percent right away and later ties them to financial markets with a cap of 8.25 percent. Minnesota Senator Al Franken (DFL-Minneapolis) supported the compromise and says he intends to keep working on college affordability. Franken and Republican Congressman John Kline both say the legislation will keep rates down for thousands of Minnesota students.
After five hours of drama in the U.S. Senate, Minnesota U.S. Attorney Todd Jones is the new director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Senate Democrats scrambled to find the votes Wednesday as Republicans resisted Jones' confirmation. Minnesota's Amy Klobuchar (DFL-Plymouth) helped persuade Alaska Republican Lisa Murkowski to switch her vote. The deciding vote was cast by North Dakota's Heidi Heitkamp who flew to Washington at the last minute after being ill all week. GOP senators questioned Jones' management style and allegations of retaliation against whistle-blowers in Minnesota. But President Obama says Jones is a "tough and tested law-enforcement official with decades of experience and his confirmation to lead the ATF is both welcome and long overdue."
It was six years ago today when the 35-W bridge collapsed in Minneapolis, and that tragedy led to stronger penalties for child abuse in neighboring Wisconsin. Michael Stoner of Spooner, Wisconsin told a television reporter he and his fiancee heroically swam from the Interstate-35-W bridge collapse to see their injured daughter in a Minneapolis hospital. Later police learned that Stoner attacked the girl at his home the same day, and his prison sentence - seven-and-a-half years - would have been longer had he attacked an adult. Eventually, the governor and legislature toughened Wisconsin's child abuse penalties to make them equal to similar attacks on adults.
Four Republicans hoping to sit at the desk in the Minnesota governor's office will square off tonight in a candidate forum in Mounds View. Next summer the GOP will be choosing its candidate to take on Democratic Governor Mark Dayton, who is seeking a second term in 2014. On the bill tonight are businessman Scott Honour, Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, state Senator Dave Thompson and state Representative Kurt Zellers. Other Republicans have said they are considering a run, but haven't yet stepped into the race