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MINNESOTA NEWS ROUNDUP: Video showing apparent bullying of toddler goes viral

More than a quarter-million people have viewed a video posted to Facebook by a 12-year-old boy from Minneapolis -- of his 5-year-old sisters apparently bullying a 3-year-old neighbor girl. The clip shows the toddler trying to play with the older girls, and the older boy can be heard off-camera encouraging the older girls to hit, push, and taunt. The older girls can be heard shouting phrases that include, "Watch me beat up this little kid," as the smaller child cries.

Minneapolis Police investigated the incident and found it was being handled properly by the parents of both sets of children. Both fathers say it has been blown out of proportion, and claim it was not racially motivated.

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A juvenile male is in custody after what authorities say was a domestic dispute between a man and his wife early Tuesday morning in Frohn (FRONE) Township, just east of Bemidji. Responding to a call of shots fired, deputies stopped a pickup they discovered had both the shooting victim and the shooter inside. Devin Spears-Thomas was flown to Duluth for treatment of gunshot wounds and the juvenile male is being held by authorities. They say no one else in the family was harmed and there is no danger to the public.

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A 53-year-old man is dead after he was struck by lightning Monday evening in Sturgeon Lake Authorities say the victim was standing in a large puddle of water near a tree when it was hit by lightning. The man was taken to a Moose Lake hospital where he died from his injuries. His name has not yet been released.

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Police investigating a drug case at a home in New Brighton were involved in a struggle with the suspect, and say the man was shot. Members of the Ramsey County Violent Crime Enforcement Team were serving the search warrant yesterday (Tue) afternoon when the man, who lives alone in the home, scuffled with officers. The suspect was hospitalized and after surgery is in stable condition. As is standard procedure in any officer-involved shooting, an investigation is underway by the Minnesota Bureau Criminal Apprehension.

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Army Major Nidal Hasan rested his case yesterday in the sentencing phase of his trial in the Fort Hood shooting massacre. The 42-year-old Hasan did not testify, after victims?relatives told military jurors about the grief he caused them. A jury of 13 military officers will decide whether Hasan will be put to death or spend the rest of his life in prison for killing Army Specialist Kham Xiong of Saint Paul and 12 others in his 2009 shooting rampage. Relatives were not allowed to condemn Hasan on the witness stand, or recommend his penalty. Some observers thought Hasan would testify about his previous comments that he committed the killings to protect Muslims in Afghanistan. The sentencing hearing resumes today. Hasan could become the first military member in 52 years to get the death penalty. 

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After police were called to check out a car that had been parked at a southeastern Minnesota park for nearly two days, searchers found the body of a woman in a nearby lake. Freeborn County Sheriff's Deputies were called to Arrowhead Park to check out the vehicle yesterday (Tue) morning, and say the owner hadn't been seen since Sunday. A K-9 unit, Freeborn firefighters, and Austin police helped search the area and the body of a 64-year-old woman was found in the lake. There are no signs of foul play. The Freeborn County Sheriff's Office and State Medical Examiners are still investigating.

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 Someone contaminated diesel fuel at two gas stations in the St. Cloud area, causing hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses and several thousand dollars more in damage to vehicles. Authorities are investigating after the diesel holding tanks at First Fuel Banks were intentionally contaminated, when someone poured an unknown substance into the tanks. Several city of St. Cloud vehicles were affected causing thousands of dollars in damage. Private business vehicles were also damaged. Anyone with information is asked to call either the St. Cloud or Waite Park Police Department. A six-thousand dollar reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible.

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Workplace deaths in Minnesota increased from 60 in 2011 to 70 last year, according to preliminary numbers just released. State Labor and Industry Commissioner Ken Peterson says transportation incidents accounted for the most fatalities, coming in at 28.

As for category of employment: agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting had the most workplace fatalities last year -- following by trade, transportation and utilities. Workplace deaths in manufacturing increased from three in 2011 to nine last year. 

Jason Schulte

Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts. 

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