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MINNESOTA NEWS ROUND-UP: Two college students dead in shooting

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ROCHESTER, Minn. - The Olmsted County Sheriff's Department continues to investigate the deaths of two college students of apparent gunshot wounds at a residence west of Oronoco.  

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Deputies on a medical call discovered an 18-year-old female dead and a 19-year-old male barely alive.  He later died at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester.  Officers say the two were acquaintances, but the extent of their relationship is not known at this time.  More information is expected later today, including their names.

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While the bitterest of the cold weather is finally in the rear-view mirror, National Weather Service meteorologist Chris Franks says sub-zero temperatures are still in store statewide overnight.  Franks says it will stay very cold even Wednesday night into Thursday morning, but without the wind.  By Friday, daytime highs are expected to be in the 30s.

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U.S. House of Representatives Agriculture Committee top Democrat Collin Peterson and the rest of the Farm bill principals are expected to release a framework agreement for long-term legislation this week with a full bill possibly released Wednesday.  A conference committee meeting hasn't been officially scheduled - but there are reports House and Senate negotiators would likely meet Thursday to vote on the most contentious issues and the overall bill. 

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Minnesota State Patrol says a wrong-way driver was killed on I-35 yesterday afternoon near Owatonna.  Investigators say 49-year-old Joell Quiram of Hartland was traveling northbound in the southbound lanes of the interstate and killed when her car slammed head-on into a semi.  The Alexandria man driving the big rig was not hurt. 

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Homeless shelters around the state have seen an influx of people coming through their doors during this latest cold snap.  The Place Of Hope in St. Cloud is giving area homeless people a safe place to stay warm during the day.  Pastor Carol Smith says they normally aren't open for drop-ins during the day but do open their doors once the temperature drops below 10 degrees.  The Place Of Hope runs the "Church Of The Week" overnight shelter program in the St. Cloud area, where people check-in at 5 p.m., are served a meal, then are brought to an area church overnight. 

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The Minnesota Department of Health has shut down most of its labs for several days after the heating system failed -- causing broken pipes and water leaks.  Lab director Joane Bartkus says damage could be upwards of a million dollars.  All infectious disease and environmental testing has been suspended, and Minnesota officials may call on neighboring states to help perform some work.  They'll know more today (Tue) about the extent of the damage and when operations might resume.

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The Fargo City Commission has approved an ordinance banning the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.  The measure passed unanimously without discussion.  The commission also added electronic devices like e-cigarettes to the list of items described as "tobacco products" as governed by the city's municipal code.

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A former "Property Crimes Wanted Person of the Week" in Duluth was recently arrested in Minneapolis following reports of a domestic assault.  Eugene Sandberg initially gave arresting officers a false name but was later identified and will face the four outstanding warrants in Saint Louis County, plus fifth-degree domestic assault charges in Hennepin County. 

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A violent confrontation over the weekend at Community Behavior Health Hospital in Fergus Falls.  Police were called to the hospital Saturday afternoon, after staff reported that a client had broken an armchair and was using an 18-inch metal piece to threaten employees.  Staff and patients locked themselves in another area.  Investigators say that 18-year-old Treyvontae Fleming  "head-butted" an officer and tried to bite another one.  A doctor says it was not a psychotic episode and in his opinion it was "calculated manipulative and criminal behavior."Fleming is charged with assault on a police officer.

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A 37-year-old man was arrested in a Fergus Falls store, after police say the package of "beef snack sticks" he tried to shoplift fell out of his pants.  Officers say he was drunk, with a blood-alcohol level of point-two-six.  He was booked into jail on the shoplifting charge and then taken to detox.

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The Wisconsin Justice Department has reached a settlement in a case against two Twin-Cities-based frac-sand mining operations.  The attorney general's office says Tiller Corporation and Interstate Energy Partners agreed to pay 80-thousand dollars, after sediments from a mine near Grantsburg, Wisconsin got into a wetland and a creek, and eventually flowed into the Saint Croix River.  Someone complained about the spill in late April of 2012.  Supporters say the mines help the U.S. reduce its dependence on foreign oil, but opponents cite numerous pollution concerns.  

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A new report says it would take up to 25 years and 18-billion dollars for a permanent solution to keep the Asian carp out of the Great Lakes.  The Army Corps of Engineers gave Congress eight options yesterday without recommending any of them.  Two proposals would create dams in Chicago's waterway system to close the connection between the carp-infested Mississippi River and Lake Michigan.  Chicago officials object it would cut off commercial activity to their region.  The Corps' other options include more and larger electronic barriers, and a new type of navigational lock that treats water to remove floating fish while still letting vessels through.  Several lawmakers say the Corps should have picked one option and examined it more thoroughly.  The Corps said it did what Congress ordered and stands ready to work on whatever solution comes out of Washington.  

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A ship named for Minnesota's Iron Range was damaged Sunday in a collision with the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hollyhock.  The ore freighter Mesabi Miner was traveling behind the cutter in northern Lake Michigan on Sunday when the crash occurred.  The cutter sustained damage to the stern and fantail and the Mesabi Miner has a crack in the bow about four feet above the waterline.  Both vessels were able to continue.  The Mesabi Miner will unload its cargo in Gary, Indiana where damage will be assessed and repairs made.  The Hollyhock arrived in St. Ignace, Michigan and is now undergoing a damage assessment.

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