Sections

Weather Forecast

Close

MINNESOTA NEWS ROUNDUP: School employees charged for not reporting sexual abuse allegation

ST. PAUL -- Two St. Paul School District employees have been charged for not reporting a former custodian who has been accused of sexually abusing a child.  Authorities say 48-year-old Beth Behnke of Burnsville and 52-year-old Craig Guidry of Arden Hills face a misdemeanor charge for not disclosing allegations against Walter Happel.  Happel is accused of looking under a bathroom stall at an 11-year-old boy in January 2012.

_________________________

Thirteen cases of E. coli have been reported in the state recently, and Mike Schommer with the Minnesota Department of Health says seven of the people with the infections report eating at Applebee's restaurants in Minnesota between June 24 and 27.  As a precaution, Applebee's is removing oriental chicken salad from all of its menus at Minnesota locations.  Schommer says syptoms of this strain of E. coli typically include stomach cramps and bloody stools. 

__________________________

The D-N-R is lifting the night fishing ban on Mille Lacs Lake effective July 21st.  Deputy Commissioner Dave Schad says the bite has been slower than expected this season with fewer anglers, so they can allow some additional harvest of walleyes and still stay below the harvest cap they set for the lake this summer.  But D-N-R officials emphasize the Mille Lacs walleye population has not recovered and a tight slot limit -- two walleyes between 18 and 20 inches --  remains in place.

___________________________

Wadena Mayor Wayne Wolden says his town is holding its own and praying for no more rain.  The city has been fighting overland flooding after torrential rains on Friday.  Wolden says the ground was already super-saturated from summer rains and couldn't hold any more water.  Wolden says as many as 100 homes have flooded basements, mixed with sewer backup from a system overwhelmed by all the rain.  Governor Dayton was in Wadena today to survey damage. 

 _________________________

Police have arrested a 17-year-old male suspect in a double stabbing in north Minneapolis over the weekend.  Police were called to a residence early Sunday morning and found one man dead and another with stab wounds.  The suspect was taken into custody Monday and has been booked into the Hennepin County Juvenile Detention Center.  

_________________________

A 79-year-old man struck by a vehicle at a busy Roseville intersection early this (MON) morning has died.  An eyewitness says the man ran across Snelling Avenue at County Road B when he was hit.  A police officer and others gave medical aid to the victim at the scene, but he later died at Regions Hospital.  The driver of the vehicle, a 39-year-old St. Paul man, is cooperating with police.  There is no indication that speed or driver impairment contributed to the crash.  The victim's name is being withheld pending notification of relatives.  

_________________________

Hotels in the Twin Cities, Duluth and Rochester are not sharing the good economy with their workers, according to a new report released this All-Star Week by the group Minnesota 2020.  Executive director Steve Fletcher says investment in employees has trended downward as sales and profits have increased.  Fletcher says they're calling on hotels to reduce excessive workloads for housekeepers, to pay significant wages and provide high quality health insurance.  This week's All-Star Game is expected to bring 160-thousand visitors to the area. 

__________________________

A company that operates drug and alcohol treatment centers in Detroit Lakes, Fargo and Grand Forks has settled a lawsuit for one-and-a-half million dollars that alleged substance abuse by staff and patients at a now-closed facility in Jamestown, North Dakota.  Eleven minors sued Drake Counseling Services.  Owner Chuck Drake has not responded to requests for comment.

__________________________

A Moorhead man is under arrest for calling in threats to Sanford Medical Center last Friday.  Fifty-three-year-old Peter Rovang (ROE-vang) is facing charges of terrorizing.  Lieutenant Joel Vettel says Rovang had an unspecified connection with the hospital and is accused of making at least two of three calls threatening explosions and shootings.  The investigation continues as to whether others may have been involved.  

__________________________

Blue Mounds State Park in far southwestern Minnesota is open again today after being closed to visitors for a month due to June's heavy rain.  While much has been done to get the park ready for visitors, the swimming area remains closed and health officials say the water in the park is still unsafe.  Kathy Dummer with the DNR says the campground, climbing area and most trails are now open.  Anyone thinking of visiting the park is advised to check the DNR's web site for updates or to make reservations. 

___________________________

Teams from FEMA and the state are in southern Minnesota again today (9am start), meeting with local officials in Mantorville, Blue Earth and Marshall as they continue assessing storm and flood damage.  Last week Governor Dayton asked President Obama for a federal disaster declaration which would make local governments eligible for assistance to repair damage to public infrastructure.  Officials say so far FEMA has confirmed over 13 million dollars in eligible costs, nearly double the statewide threshold to receive federal aid.  Damage assessment teams are scheduled to visit Faribault, Redwood Falls and Saint James tomorrow (Wed).

___________________________

An investigation continues after an elderly man was killed after being hit by a car while crossing the road in Roseville.  Police say 79-year-old Charles Betts was crossing Snelling Avenue early Monday morning when he was struck.  He later died from his injuries at a nearby hospital.

__________________________

A teenager is in custody following a double stabbing Sunday morning that took the life of one man and left another injured.  The 17-year-old is accused of stabbing the two men at a home in the 36-hundred-block of Emerson Avenue.  Police have identified the victim as 23-year-old Matthew Little  The man who survived was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

__________________________

 Authorities have released the name of a Brainerd man killed in a tractor accident last week in Sylvan Township in Cass County.  The victim is 86-year-old Reuben Root.  Emergency responders found Root in a shed at a residence, where they say a tractor had rolled in reverse and pinned him against a trailer hitch.

________________________

Even though the D-N-R is lifting the controversial night fishing ban on Mille Lacs Lake effective July 21st, a tight slot limit -- two walleyes between 18 and 20 inches -- remains in place.  D-N-R Deputy Commissioner Dave Schad says it's being done to limit harvest, so Mille Lacs recovers as quickly as possible which would allow more liberal regulations.  Resort owners and others say tight slot regulations have kept anglers away.  Schad responds there's been a "real downturn" in the walleye population on Mille Lacs Lake and they're taking a number of steps to try to turn that around.

____________________________

Cass County authorities continue investigating the July 24th, 2009 disappearance of 82-year-old Peter Achermann of Staples.  His vehicle was found the next day on a minimum maintenance road.  Sheriff Tom Burch says they're trying to bring attention to the case nearly five years later.  A reward of up to 20-thousand dollars is offered for tips that lead to an arrest and conviction.  Sheriff Burch says numerous searches and leads have not helped solve Achermann's disappearance.  

__________________________

Sharp criticism in federal court Monday of Minnesota's embattled Sex Offender Treatment Program, which keeps people locked up after they've served their prison term if they're judged at high-risk of re-offending.  The Star Tribune reports court-appointed experts argued for the release of 24-year-old Eric Terhaar (ter-HARR'), who's never been convicted of a crime as an adult, and 48-year-old Rhonda Bailey -- the only woman ever civilly committed as a sex offender in Minnesota.  Attorneys for the state Human Services Department argued Terhaar and Bailey are unusual cases which don't represent broader concerns about the state's Sex Offender Treatment Program.  (A federal judge has urged state lawmakers to change the program, or he might step in.) 

Advertisement