Minnesota News Briefs: Police looking for missing New Brighton boyMinnesota News
-- Police are asking for the public's help finding a missing teenage boy.
(New Brighton, MN) -- Police are asking for the public's help finding a missing teenage boy.
Sixteen-year-old Will Ricci disappeared from his New Brighton home last Friday morning Public Safety Director Bob Jacobson says authorities don't believe there's any criminal motive -- that Ricci left of his own volition -- but they're still concerned about his well-being. Ricci is white, five-foot-11, 165 pounds and has dishwater blond hair and grey/blue eyes. Anyone with information is asked to contact the New Brighton Police Department (651-767-0640).
The shooter who killed six people at Accent Signage this fall was warned that his constant tardiness needed to be addressed. The Minneapolis Police Department released the personnel file on Andrew Engeldinger, which shows he was late for 35 straight days in August and September. The file also included accusations of verbal abuse. Engeldinger shot five co-workers and a UPS driver at Accent Signage September 27th before taking his own life. He was fired from his job minutes before Minnesota's deadliest workplace shooting.
Minnesota is on pace to have fewer fire deaths in 2012 than last year. State Fire Marshal Jerry Rosendahl says his office won't have the final total until late February, but right now the state is at 47 fatalities for this year, compared to 54 last year at this point. Rosendahl adds 2011 was a terrible year with 56 fire deaths -- and two people were killed in fires between Christmas and New Year's Day. Rosendahl says they do not want to add any fire deaths to the 2012 total during the holidays. The state record for fewest fire fatalities was 35 in 2009.
Minnesota is marking the 150th anniversary of the hanging of 38 Dakota Sioux men in Mankato today with a remembrance ceremony and dedication of a new monument. Bud Lawrence says Reconciliation Park symbolizes the spiritual survival of the Dakota people. A group of 150 Dakota horse riders made the memorial trip to Mankato from South Dakota.
Watch out for counterfeit tickets to the Vikings' home game against Green Bay on Sunday. That regular season finale is a sell-out and the purple-and-gold can earn a playoff berth with a win over the rival Packers. Team officials say many tickets will be sold over the Internet and outside the Metrodome on game day. Fans are urged to use common sense and check Sunday to see if the visiting team returned any of its tickets. Only the Vikings' ticket office, Ticketmaster and the NFL TicketExchange can guarantee a valid online ticket. Any fan caught inside with a fake ticket will be asked to leave and could be arrested.
The marching band at Fergus Falls High School is trying to raise money for their trip to Washington D.C. for President Obama's inauguration. Band director Scott Kummrow says the kids are working very hard to represent the community and state, and they're asking people to help out if they can. The Fergus Falls High School marching band performed four years ago in the Obama inaugural parade. Fergus Falls was chosen again this year from about 28-hundred applicants.
Residents affected by June's flash flooding in northeastern Minnesota now have until January 31st to apply for disaster relief. Bruce Gordon with the state Public Safety Department says some homeowners don't want to ask for help, but this might be a good time to look at what resources are available. Gordon encourages neighbors, friends and relatives of those affected by the floods to contact loan administrators and discuss the options available through the Quick Start program.
Thousands of people in the state are at risk of losing their unemployment benefits. More than 12,000 Minnesotans could lose their unemployment benefits at the end of the year if Congress fails to renew a program. Those who would be impacted are participants in a federal program that provides assistance to people who have already received their full compliment of 26 weeks of state jobless benefits. The Emergency Compensation Program, which offers up to 53 weeks of benefits for the long-term unemployed, was first implemented in 2008.