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REGIONAL BRIEFS: Cottage Grove man admits theft from archdiocese

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Credit Forum News Service

Minnesota

Frazee man struck, killed by train

FRAZEE, Minn. -- A 22-year-old Frazee man died Thursday night after he was struck by a train in Frazee, Becker County Sheriff Kelly Shannon said in a statement Friday.

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Shannon said the victim, Sim V. Pettibone, was struck by a BNSF train about 11:23 p.m. about 200 yards east of Lake Street in Frazee.

Pettibone was pronounced dead at the scene.

The railroad reported the incident, Shannon said.

The incident remains under investigation, according to Shannon, who provided no other details.

(FF)

Cottage Grove man admits theft from archdiocese

ST. PAUL -- A Cottage Grove man has pleaded guilty to multiple charges in connection with the theft of more than $670,000 from the St. Paul-Minneapolis Catholic Archdiocese.

Scott J. Domeier, 51, pleaded guilty last week to three counts of theft by swindle and two counts of filing a false tax return in Ramsey County District Court. He will be sentenced July 16 and faces up to four years in prison. He also will pay restitution.

"This man stole more than money, he took the trust of parishioners as well," Ramsey County District Attorney John Choi said.

According to court records, Domeier stole more than $670,000 while working as the archdiocese's accounting director from 1995 to early 2012. He used the money to pay off personal credit card debt, cover his children's student tuition and for other personal expenses.

The church placed him on administrative leave in January 2012 after learning he had inappropriately taken first-class airline tickets to Hawaii from a church vendor and misused a credit card issued to him. Also, records show, he diverted a parish's $4,735 check for Hurricane Katrina relief so he could buy a car owned by the parish, and he used stolen funds to pay for repairs to that car.

(SWC)

North Dakota

Woman rescued from Red River in Fargo

FARGO -- A woman was taken to the hospital early Friday after being rescued from the chilly Red River near Fargo's Midtown Dam.

Firefighters responded to a call about 2:20 a.m. from a woman who called 911 from her cellphone while clinging to an object in the river.

According to a fire department report, police and ambulance personnel found the woman clinging to a post at the end of a boat landing about 90 feet from the water's edge, 100 yards downstream from the dam.

While a fire department boat was being launched, two firefighters waded out on the boat ramp, which was covered by high water from recent rains, and threw the woman a rope.

She was unable to grab it, so firefighters waded out to the woman and held her head above water while helping her into the boat. The woman was transported to a hospital.

Fire Department Battalion Chief Dane Carley said her condition was unknown and that authorities didn't know why the woman was near the river at that time of night.

Carley said the information available to him did not include the woman's name or where she was from.

(FF)

Wisconsin

Arizona man charged in Superior killing

SUPERIOR, Wis. -- Charges have been filed against an Arizona man in a fatal shooting Thursday at Genesis Attachments in Superior.

Juan Leonardo Padilla, 41, of Fort Mohave, Ariz., is charged with first-degree intentional homicide in the death of Terrance Rodney Luukkonen, 46, of Duluth.

According to the criminal complaint filed Friday in Douglas County Circuit Court, Luukkonen had been engaged to an area woman who had broken off a relationship with Padilla about a month ago.

She told police Padilla was upset about the breakup and had made statements to her that he wanted to kill her fiancé.

With no plan or warning, Padilla came to the Superior area and was staying at the Allyndale Motel in Duluth, the complaint states. The woman had occasional contact with Padilla while he was in the area.

Before the shooting, the victim's vehicle brake lines were cut and a tire was slashed.

Luukkonen suffered a gunshot wound to the head. He was found in the driver's seat of his vehicle and taken to a Duluth hospital, where he died Thursday.

(DNT)

Drugs suspected in woman's death at motel

HUDSON, Wis. -- The death of a 21-year-old woman at the Super 8 in Hudson last weekend appears to be drug and/or alcohol-related, according to the Hudson Police Department.

Alysa Jenea Ivy of Hudson was found dead in a room at the motel around 11 a.m. May 18 by a 21-year-old male companion. The two had checked into the room the night before. Another person was with them for part of the time the night before but then left.

Chief Marty Jensen said the case is under investigation and toxicology reports are pending. "But drugs and alcohol were found on the scene," Jensen said.

According to a published obituary, Ivy did suffer from addiction in recent years. She moved to Hudson from Texas when she was a sophomore and graduated from Hudson High School in 2010.

(HSO)

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