REGIONAL BRIEFS: Suspect held in man’s deathPINE RIVER, Minn. – A female suspected in the disappearance and death of a 27-year-old Pine River man is in police custody. The remains of Mark Andrew Huesman, 27, of Pine River, were found Wednesday in a shallow grave near the Pine River area.
Forum Communications News Bureau
Suspect held in man’s death (BP)
PINE RIVER, Minn. – A female suspected in the disappearance and death of a 27-year-old Pine River man is in police custody.
The remains of Mark Andrew Huesman, 27, of Pine River, were found Wednesday in a shallow grave near the Pine River area, according to a press release from the Cass County Sheriff’s Office. Huesman had been reported missing earlier in the week.
Cass County Sheriff Tom Burch reports that foul play is suspected and a female suspect is being held in the Cass County Jail in conjunction with the death.
The suspect’s name is being withheld pending formal charges.
An autopsy is planned with the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Adult-themed store wins one round in court (GFH)
EAST GRAND FORKS, Minn. -- An adult-themed store has re-opened in East Grand Forks after a federal judge in Minneapolis filed a preliminary injunction giving it the right to do so in spite of the city’s opposition.
Fantasy’s still has to win a lawsuit to stay open permanently in a commercial zone.
The city claims the business should be classified as “adult use” and may only open in an industrial zone.
East Grand Forks City Administrator Scott Huizenga maintains the city’s stance that Fantasy’s should not be in a commercial zone. East Grand Forks city code says adult-themed bookstores, arcades, video stores, cabarets and parlors are among those that don’t qualify for commercial zones.
“What’s on the books is what we stand by,” Huizenga said.
Fantasy’s, which has a location in Fargo, attempted to open in East Grand Forks in May after the Grand Forks City Council in April pushed the store out of a location near an elementary school with an ordinance restricting where an adult-themed businesses can operate.
Man sentenced for threatening officers (AEP)
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. – A man who swerved his vehicle toward one driven by off-duty sheriff’s deputies and waved a gun at them has been sentenced to three years in prison.
After a two-day trial, Scott Tarczon, 38, of Villard, Minn., was convicted of two counts of second degree assault with a dangerous weapon, two counts of terroristic threats and one count of reckless driving stemming from an incident on on Highway 27 near Alexandria in October.
Two off-duty Douglas County deputies were in civilian clothes and in a personal vehicle when Tarczon pulled out in front of their vehicle onto Highway 27 and began to travel well below the speed limit.
When the off-duty deputy who was driving attempted to pass Tarczon, Tarczon sped up and swerved at the other vehicle and accelerated toward their vehicle from behind. Tarczon then produced a large, black handgun and began waving it angrily.
The off-duty deputies requested assistance from on-duty officers. Officers followed Tarczon to a residence in Villard where he was arrested. Officers discovered methamphetamine and a handgun that shot pellets and BBs.
Tarczon pleaded guilty to methamphetamine possession before his jury trial began.
“There is no smart way to end up in prison,” Douglas County Attorney Chad Larsons said in a news release Wednesday, “but this was an incredibly stupid route.”
Large residential development planned (AEP
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. -- A development large enough for 1,200 residents is moving ahead in southeast Alexandria across from the new high school near Lake Burgen.
LBR Properties is pursuing the 54-acre development known as Stonemanor, east of Pioneer Road.
LBR plans to build eight apartment buildings – two three-story buildings containing 63 units each and six four-story buildings containing 86 units each. That’s a total of 642 multi-family residential units. If an average of two people are in each unit, there could be 1,284 people living there.
Plans call for walking paths, picnic areas, playgrounds, gazebos and sports courts.
The development also has 9.9 acres set aside for commercial use, which is not yet specified, but could include retail stores, a bank, a gas station/convenience store, a dental office or other uses.
The development cleared a few major hurdles at Monday night’s Alexandria City Council meeting but the public and government agencies will have opportunities to weigh in on the project.
Not everyone is welcoming it with open arms. Some residents near the lake expressed worries about the magnitude of the development and its impact on the lake.
Police seize $2.8 million from shop owner (DNT)
DULUTH -- The Duluth Police Department on Thursday released some details of its raid at the Last Place on Earth store in downtown Duluth Wednesday. In a press release, the department said it also seized money from owner Jim Carlson’s bank accounts that totaled about $2.8 million.
At the store Wednesday, police, along with and federal and regional drug enforcement agents, executed a search warrant at the store and seized boxes containing more than 20,000 individual packages of “suspected synthetic marijuana,” five firearms — including two loaded hand guns, and more than $3,000 in cash.
Along with the $2.8 million held from Carlson’s bank, police also seized two of his vehicles: a 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee and 2012 Ford F-150.
9-ton veterans monument set in place (DNT)
VIRGINIA, Minn. — Tom Berringer leaned on a guard rail watching the 9 tons of bronze suspended in the air in front of him. His wife, Lori, stood next to him, the couple temporarily apart from a crowd of about 200 people Thursday morning in Virginia’s Center City Park.
Fourteen years after a group of Iron Range veterans first conceived the idea, a monument honoring U.S. veterans of all services, in all 20th century wars, was almost in place.
“Right now, I’m full of butterflies,” Berringer had said a few minutes earlier, as workers from Lakehead Constructors painstakingly rigged a harness around the 15-foot-by-27-foot monument, titled “Shoulder to Shoulder: Even the Fallen Stand Tall.”
Berringer, of Mountain Iron, Minn., was chairman of the committee that raised $920,000 for the monument, which was designed by Gareth Andrews of Zim, Minn.
The monument depicts members of the U.S. armed forces, male and female, of various ethnic groups, gathered around a fallen comrade under the protection of an eagle whose feathers merge into the fabric of a U.S. flag.
Local credit union merges with state union (FF)
MOORHEAD – A local credit union here has completed a yearlong merger with a statewide credit union.
Moorhead Federal Credit Union has merged with Central Minnesota Credit Union, providing Moorhead credit union members access to expanded products and services, including commercial and agricultural loans and other consumer products, a Central Minnesota Credit Union release said.
The Moorhead Federal Credit Union location here at 1002 Main Ave. will remain open, the release said.
According to the release, membership is open to persons who live or work in the following Minnesota Counties: Becker, Benton, Clay, Douglas, Grant, Kandiyohi, Meeker, Morrison, Otter Tail, Pope, Sherburne, Stearns, Todd, Wadena, Wilkin, Wright and North Dakota Counties of Cass and Richland.
Local food farming operations tour Aug. 16 (FF)
ADA, Minn. – University of Minnesota Extension is hosting a tour of local food farming operations Aug. 16 in Norman and Mahnomen counties.
Participants will have the opportunity to learn about natural and sustainable production methods that can be used in their own backyard garden.
The daylong event includes stops at Red Goose Gardens in Shelly; Brandt Farms in Ada; and Trees and a Breeze Bison Ranch in Waubun.
A local foods lunch will be served at noon at the Ada Fairgrounds. Advance reservations for the lunch are required by Aug. 13. To register, email Ben Arlt at email@example.com or call (218) 784-5550. Proceeds from the lunch benefit local 4H clubs.
A tour brochure with a list of specific times and locations is available online at www.extension.umn.edu under “publications.”
Woman in court on prostitution charge (GFH)
GRAND FORKS -- A Grand Forks woman charged in a rare prostitution bust in Grand Forks appeared Thursday in court to say she is going to represent herself and plead not guilty to the misdemeanor at a bench trial this fall.
The Emerado, N.D., man who answered her ad and paid her $100 also faces a similar misdemeanor charge of hiring someone for sex.
According to the police complaint, Kayla Wright, now 20, advertised online about 2 a.m., Feb. 17 .
Within a few hours, Paul Balstad of nearby Emerado was in her motel room.
Wright’s roommate, Uniquea Davis, left the room and the sexual encounter began. But it quickly ended when Davis returned, pounding on the door “stating the police were there.”
The police were looking for Davis, but under police questioning, Wright “admitted to the money for sex encounter,” according to the written complaint.
Both Wright and Bolstad were charged with corresponding B misdemeanors which carry maximum penalties of 30 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Wright’s trial is set for Oct. 4. Balstad has appeared on his charge and has a pre-trial conference scheduled for Aug. 16.
Heitkamp taps N.D. ag leader as policy adviser (FF)
FARGO – A notable name in North Dakota agriculture is joining Democrat Heidi Heitkamp’s Senate campaign as a senior policy adviser.
Robert Carlson will be advising Heitkamp on agricultural policy as he continues serving as president of the World Farmers Organisation in Rome, Heitkamp’s campaign announced Thursday.
Before joining the WFO in 2011, Carlson served as president of the North Dakota Farmer’s Union for 14 years and vice president for 10 years before that.
Aside from his position with the WFO, Carlson also currently serves as director for international relations for the National Farmers Union.
“I’ve known Robert a long time, and he brings with him decades of experience in the agricultural community and a depth and breadth of knowledge on agricultural issues that is second to none,” Heitkamp said in a statement. “I couldn’t be happier to have Robert’s advice and counsel on all issues related to agriculture and trade.”
N.D. Tourism staff near Valley City today (FF)
VALLEY CITY, N.D. – North Dakota Tourism staff will provide traveler assistance and conduct a survey noon to 2 p.m. today in the Oriska rest area, located near Exit 302 along I-94.
N.D. Tourism staff members are traveling this month to high-visitor traffic areas, a release stated.
For more information, call Dean Ihla at (701) 471-0457.
USDA authorizes emergency CRP haying, grazing (FF)
FARGO – USDA Farm Service Agency State Executive Director Aaron Krauter announced Thursday that the FSA has authorized emergency haying and grazing use of Conservation Reserve Program acres for all North Dakota counties.
Under CRP emergency haying and grazing provisions, haying activity may not occur after Aug. 31, a FSA release stated, and grazing activity may not occur after Sept. 30.
The release stated there are about 1.6 million acres of CRP available for emergency haying and grazing in the state. Producers are reminded CRP acreage cannot be both hayed and grazed at the same time.
For more information, call Krauter at (701) 239-5224.