WELCH, Minn. - A Prairie Island Police officer escaped injury Sunday night when he was involved in a crash during a traffic stop.
Minnesota State Patrol says the officer had pulled over a driver on County Road 18 near Red Wing when a car driven by 84-year-old Jeanne Schadt hit the rear of the squad car, pushing it into the other stopped vehicle. Schadt was taken to the hospital but is expected to recover. Neither the officer nor the driver of the car he'd stopped was hurt.
Emergency crews were called to several ice rescues across the state over the weekend. An Anoka County Sheriff's deputy was first on the scene after a 53-year-old man was trapped in chest-deep water when his SUV plunged into a creek in Isanti County on Friday. Yang Vee of East Bethel was in the water for about 30 minutes but was not hurt. The Cass County Sheriff's Department used a hovercraft to help rescue four people from a trailer attached to a full-size SUV that went under on Leech Lake on Friday. Two of them were taken to the hospital to be checked out. A man was arrested after driving into open water on Otter Tail Lake Saturday night. He and a passenger got out of the partially submerged car, and the driver was later arrested for drunk driving. A Douglas County man and his 16-year-old daughter escaped injury when their car broke through the ice on Lake Ida. They were able to get to solid ice before rescuers got there.
A Bemidji State University student is hospitalized in Fargo after she was found outside Sunday morning. The student has been identified as Hannah Rolschau, a second-year education major. An update on her condition has not been released at the request of the girl's family. It's not the first such incident this winter; a BSU student died in early December when she fell into a creek walking home from a party. 20-year-old freshman Sandra Lommen was a nursing student at Bemidji State.
Demonstrators continue to voice their concerns over the topic of racial inequality. Thousands marched in St. Paul on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to protest the treatment of minorities by police officers. The event was put together by Members of Black Lives Matter Minneapolis. Marchers did attempt to enter Interstate 94 but were blocked by state troopers. A candlelight vigil for Marcus Golden was held at the State Capitol. The 24-year-old was shot and killed by St. Paul police last week.
Some new details are coming out regarding the apparent murder-suicide of a family of three in Apple Valley. The bodies of David and Komel Crowley and their five-year-old daughter were discovered inside their home Saturday by a neighbor. Police Captain John Bermel says there was a gun near the bodies and the cause of death was gunshot wounds. Bermel says investigators are working to establish a timeline and determine how long the bodies had been in the home. Neighbors and friends say they had not heard from or seen the family since before Christmas. A filmmaker, David Crowley wrote and directed a movie about the U.S. entering a violent police state following a national crisis called "Gray State." A crowd funding campaign raised more than $60,000 to make the film, which has not been released.
Opening statements are scheduled today in the trial of accused cop killer Brian Fitch in St.Cloud. Forty-year-old Fitch pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in the July 30th shooting of Mendota Heights Police Officer Scott Patrick in West St. Paul. The trial was moved from Dakota to Stearns County because the defense did not think he could get an impartial jury in Hastings. Twelve jurors and two alternates were seated Friday in a trial that is expected to last two to two-and-a-half weeks. The judge will allow evidence that Fitch allegedly tried to arrange the murder of two key witnesses from his prison cell.
Bishop John Quinn says no steps have been taken to date for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Winona to file for bankruptcy. Quinn made those comments after the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minnespolis declared bankruptcy Friday in the wake of priest sexual abuse claims against it. Only four of the 15 accused priests who served at one time in Winona are still alive. Bishop Quinn says the Diocese of Winona will continue its day-to-day mission of serving Christ and helping others and has no foreseeable plan to file for bankruptcy.
A Minnesota man charged with running an illegal sports betting business in North Dakota has reached a plea deal in federal court. Court documents show 69-year-old Gerald Greenfield of Bloomington plans to plead guilty to transmitting wager information and money laundering. Prosecutors say Greenfield received about ten-million dollars each year in wagers and made between $500,000-600,000 in profits annually. Money from the wagers was allegedly kept in overseas bank accounts. Greenfield earlier pleaded guilty to running a $2.5-million mortgage fraud scheme in the Twin Cities.
Up to 350 people are expected at the first-ever Aquatic Invaders Summit the next two days in St.Cloud. The event is bringing experts from across the country to share new research, best practices and ways to collaborate in fighting invasive species. Minnesota is the first state to set aside public dollars - $10 million - to battle the spread of aquatic invasive species like zebra mussels and Eurasian water milfoil. Experts warn the aggressive invasive species are threatening the state's $12.5-billion tourism industry and the 245,000 jobs it creates.
There's a ceremonial ribbon cutting today on the newly-renovated Minnesota National Guard Armory in Austin. The $3.7-million project includes a new roof, a high-efficiency heating and air conditioning system, fire sprinkler system, modernized kitchen, female locker and shower facilities, physical fitness training room, and ADA accessibility improvements. The Austin Armory was originally constructed in 1964 and is home to the 224th Transportation Company Headquarters, providing training space for 100 soldiers per month.
Thirty-six-year-old Rebekah Erler of Minneapolis will be sitting with First Lady Michelle Obama at tonight's State of the Union Address. Last summer, the Minnesota mom sent a letter to the president detailing the difficulties facing her family during the economic downturn. The president had lunch with Erler to discuss her situation and how the economy was impacting middle class Americans last June. Erler will be among about 20 invited guests sitting in the First Lady's box during the address.
State Senator Dave Senjem plans to sponsor a bill that would offer medical device companies a state tax credit to offset the federal medical device tax. The Rochester Republican is expected to introduce the legislation today at the Capitol. The measure is reportedly aimed at encouraging companies to stay in Minnesota - and also to signal support for the repeal of the federal tax. Congressman Erik Paulsen (R-Eden Prairie) is carrying a bill that would repeal the 2.3 percent excise tax in the Affordable Care Act that applies to the sale of medical device products.
Members of the Alzheimer's Association are hoping the attention the disease is getting from a Hollywood movie will lead to more funding. "Still Alice" starring Julianne Moore opened in select theaters over the weekend. Spokeswoman Katrice Sisson says the effort to find a cure is being severely underfunded. She says right now the current federal funding level for all cancer research is around six-billion dollars, but for Alzheimer's research it's only 600-million. Sisson says they have a rally day at the State Capitol tomorrow(wed), where they'll be lobbying state lawmakers to increase funding.
The historic clock sitting above Minneapolis City Hall will not be able to tell time for the next couple of days. The clock stopped just after 6:30 Monday morning so crews can clean the late-19th-century downtown landmark and find out if any major repairs need to be done. The 345-foot clock tower is expected to be moving again by this Friday.