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MINNESOTA NEWS ROUNDUP: Man accused in Vikings son's death pleads not guilty

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news Ellsworth, 54011

Ellsworth Wisconsin 126 S. Chestnut St. 54011

SIOUX FALLS, SD. -- The man accused in the death of Vikings star Adrian Peterson's son has pleaded not guilty to charges he allegedly attacked the boy's mother in South Dakota.  Joseph Patterson was arrested in June after police say he attacked the mother of two-year-old Tyrese Ruffin in the Sioux Falls area and held her against her will.  The 28-year-old was living with the same woman last October when he was accused of beating Ruffin to death.  Patterson is set to go on trial in each case in the coming months.

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During the first half of the year, the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement sent more than 170 unaccompanied immigrant children to Minnesota.  Those figures are from the agency's state-by-state breakdown of child placement.  Most of the children are from Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras and the U-S Department of Health and Human Services is required by law to provide care for unaccompanied foreign children who illegally enter the United States from countries that do not border the United States.  The surge of unaccompanied immigrant children began in 2012, but has increased significantly this year.

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A citizens group that opposes a wolf-hunting season in Minnesota takes issue with the D-N-R's latest population estimates as the agency announces target harvests for this fall.  The D-N-R says about 24-hundred wolves lived in Minnesota this past winter, but Doctor Maureen Hackett with the group Howling for Wolves says those numbers are "extremely loose" and the state is getting "very close to the numbers of wolves where we would have to start to protect them again."  The D-N-R's Dan Stark responds Minnesota's wolf hunt is the most closely-monitored season of any game species.  Stark says the number of wolves that have been taken in the last couple years has not had a significant impact on the overall population.

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A south Minneapolis home that became a landmark for the civil rights movement is being recognized for its historical significance.  "The Star Tribune" reports the former home of Arthur and Edith Lee has been added to the National Register of Historic Places.  The house, located at 46th and Columbus, gained prominence when the Lees, along with their young daughter, moved into the home in 1931 as the only black couple in neighborhood.  Mobs of people tried to force the family out, but with the help of others, the Lees were able to withstand for two years.  Efforts have been made for over a decade to recognize the house for its historical significance.        

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A decision is expected soon from the E-P-A on the Renewable Fuel Standard, which requires transportation fuel sold in the U-S contain a minimum volume of renewable fuels.  Senator Al Franken says indications are the E-P-A will keep the current standard for the coming year --  something he and other ag-state senators oppose.  Franken argues lowering or keeping the current standard sends the wrong message to the markets, and would mean some biofuel producers would be forced to shut down.

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State D-F-L Party leaders say a panel of three administrative law judges has unanimously rejected a complaint against State Auditor Rebecca Otto.  Former State Representative Matt Entenza, who's challenging Otto for the auditor's job in the August D-F-L primary, alleged Otto misrepresented her position on voter photo-ID, implying on Facebook that she voted against it when she was in the legislature -- but Entenza claimed Otto voted "yes."  But the judge panel dismissed that claim, prompting state D-F-L Party Chairman to say "Otto had it right" and that "Entenza will say anything to get himself elected."  Dave Colling, a spokesman for the Entenza campaign, says that while the case was dismissed because of Otto's confusion over the term 'voter I-D', it doesn't change the fact that Otto supported it.  

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Two people were hurt in an outdoor wood stove explosion in Brainerd.  Crow Wing County Sheriff Todd Dahl says a man was trying to light the stove outside a home on Nokay Lake Road when it exploded, and he and a woman were hurt.  They were taken to the hospital with burn injuries.  The extent of those injuries is not clear.

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One person died and at least two others were hurt when six vehicles collided at an Interstate construction zone near the Minnesota-Wisconsin state line.  It happened yesterday morning on I-90 just north of La Crosse, near French Island.  The Wisconsin State Patrol's preliminary investigation shows that traffic was merging into the construction zone when a dump truck could not slow down in time, and it rear-ended another vehicle.  A van and four cars also got snarled up in the crash.  T-V reports said the dump truck landed on top of one of the cars, and both rolled into a median where they started on fire.  The drivers' names were not immediately released.  An investigation continues.

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A St. Paul woman has died in a scooter versus car accident.  Police say 39-year-old Kimberly Stevenson's scooter collided with the car Thursday morning on Lexington Parkway in Como Park. Stevenson died at the scene.  The accident remains under investigation.    

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"Rumble strips" that alert distracted or sleepy motorists when they're over the center-line or onto the shoulder are prompting noise complaints from North Shore residents -- and MN-DOT is filling in the center-line strips along Highway 61 in Cook and Lake counties.  The agency's Ken Johnson says they're researching other possible pavement patterns that would generate less noise outside the vehicle but still be loud enough inside.  Johnson says they'll also make sure any new "rumble strip" design is safe for motorcyclists.  Johnson emphasizes "rumble strips" have been shown to significantly reduce highway crashes.

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Police were called to a home in the tiny Otter Tail County community of Deer Creek -- population 320 -- after a 9-1-1 call about a loud argument taking place there in the late night hours.  The police report shows that the couple was arguing over a pork chop for the next day's lunch.  The officer wrote that they agreed to go to bed and be quiet for the rest of the night. 

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