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A dog stranded on a Mississippi River island near Red Wing was rescued Friday by three fishermen angling near the High Bridge. The men found the battered collie clinging to a log in Mississippi River's swift-moving current near Island Campground and coaxed it into their boat. They called the Goodhue County Humane Society from a cell phone and dropped the dog off with a volunteer at Bay Point Park. "He was very hungry, very wet and very tired," said Linda Niebeling, Humane Society volunteer. "It was very traumatic for him, I'm sure. He slept for two days.
A Maiden Rock man faces three felony charges for allegedly assaulting a man outside a Pierce County bar, then threatening witnesses who tried to help the victim. Kevin D. Fisher, 48, was charged this week in Pierce County Circuit Court with substantial battery, two counts of intimidating a victim and disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor. If convicted on all charges, Fisher faces a maximum punishment of more than 23 years behind bars and a $61,000 fine.
ELLSWORTH -- With a new attorney by his side, a Hager City man pleaded not guilty Friday to 11 criminal counts that could put him behind bars the rest of his life. Wade Swenson, 39, is accused of sexually assaulting and secretly videotaping family members. He was charged in October in Pierce County Circuit Court with multiple felonies -- including second-degree sexual assault -- in connection with the incidents.
LAKE PEPIN -- Wacouta residents Jerry and Jan Nelson and a group of friends feared the worst Sunday evening when they came across an overturned catamaran on Lake Pepin's choppy waters. Even the couple's large ocean-going vessel had been hard to navigate through sustained 40 mph winds and occasional squalls and gusts produced by a storm that quickly moved through the area. Members of a national boating safety club, the Nelsons knew attempting such unforgiving waters during bad weather in a small boat could be potentially deadly. The group - including Wacouta residents Arlin and Marilyn
Greg Schmotzer and Chris Swarbrick have done it again. For the third consecutive year, the local duo took first place in the St. Paul Winter Carnival multi-block ice carving competition. Their entry, "Fountain of the Unicorns," which depicts three unicorns rearing up from an intertwined ball of ice, landed them $3,000. Awards were given out Sunday. Schmotzer is a Hastings resident and a chef at Treasure Island Resort & Casino. He lives in Hastings with his wife, Sharyl, and two kids, Riley and Tyler.
PLUM CITY -- Unless they were looking for it, most people probably wouldn't notice the unique geological formation stretching for four miles in eastern Pierce County. But it's there -- and it's one of Nugget Lake County Park's most popular features. The formation is known as the Rock Elm disturbance. Some geologists think the disturbance is an old meteor crater; others suspect either faulting or pressurized gas was the culprit. Nugget Lake County Park sits on the edge of the disturbance, giving those who visit the park to camp or hike the trails a look at a rare occurrence.
At the Route Bike Shop in Red Wing, more and more people are bringing in their old bikes in hopes of hitting the road this summer on a less costly set of wheels. Bikes don't guzzle down gas at $4 a gallon, of course, but they are like vehicles in another sense: They need a tune-up from time to time. Andrew Petersen, store manager at The Route, said it's important to give bikes a quick safety check before hitting the road. One of the most common problems can be with the chains, Petersen said, and their lack of lubrication.
ELLSWORTH - The day she was to go on trial, a Maiden Rock woman agreed to a plea agreement for her role in a fatal 2006 crash. Kristin Baum, 20, pleaded guilty Thursday to one felony count of homicide by vehicle-use of a controlled substance. Another felony homicide charge will be dismissed - along with several unrelated charges - as part of the deal. Blood tests allegedly show that Baum had morphine, methamphetamine and amphetamine in her system the night of the crash that killed another Maiden Rock woman - 64-year-old Gladys Jakes. Baum crested a hill, crossing the center line and hi
Authorities said today they know more about the identities of three babies found between 1999 and 2007 in or near the Mississippi River in Goodhue County (Minn.). Two children found in 1999 and 2003 are likely related to each other, DNA evidence released today confirmed. The third baby discovered this winter is not related to those children, authorities said. DNA results also suggest the parents of the first two babies are caucasian. There is as much as a 70 percent chance the third child is American Indian.
Laboratory tests performed on three dead babies found the waters of the Mississippi River in Goodhue County (Minn.) have revealed "significant" DNA findings, authorities said Wednesday. Sheriff Dean Albers plans on making a public statement early next week about the information. The results include data about the girl found this winter floating near Prairie Island marina and babies found in 1999 and 2003. Albers said he must meet with officials from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension before releasing any specifics.