REGIONAL BRIEFS: Backhoe accident kills workerHASTINGS, Minn. -- A Hastings man was killed Monday morning when a backhoe tipped over and fell on top of him.
From the Forum Communications News Bureau
Robbery suspects cause gas leak
WILLMAR, Minn. — Two robbery suspects fled from Willmar Police early Thursday morning, causing a gas leak that required the evacuation of half of the residents of a mobile home park.
According to Police Capt. Jim Felt, Darian Frank, 19, of Willmar, is in the Kandiyohi County Jail and a 16-year-old boy from Willmar is at Prairie Lakes Detention Center. They are being held on charges including theft, burglary, fleeing in a motor vehicle and tampering with a motor vehicle.
Residents of the Regency West mobile home park were allowed to return to their homes about 4 a.m. after the Willmar Fire Department contained gas leak.
The incident began about 1:20 a.m. when officers were dispatched to a home for a reported robbery, possibly with a weapon.
A van and two suspects were located in the mobile home park. The driver fled from police through yards and hit a gas meter on an empty lot before going into an open field. The driver lost control and the vehicle struck a police squad car. The two suspects were arrested.
Police determined that the van had been stolen in Willmar.
Zebra mussel eradication effort fails
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. -- An effort to kill zebra mussels discovered in Lake Irene and Rose Lake was unsuccessful, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Last fall, DNR biologists investigated two separate cases where boat lifts used in zebra mussel infested lakes had been moved to non-infested waters -- Lake Irene in Douglas County and Rose Lake in Otter Tail County.
The DNR attempted to eradicate zebra mussels by treating both areas with copper sulfate, a common chemical used to treat snails that cause swimmer’s itch.
While larval zebra mussels (veligers) and juvenile and adult zebra mussels were not detected during the summer, “during our fall searches, we did find adult zebra mussels in both lakes,” said Nathan Olson, DNR invasive species specialist in Fergus Falls.
Olson said the DNR cannot confirm that zebra mussels have reproduced in either lake.
The DNR also has confirmed the presence of juvenile zebra mussels in Lake Miltona, north of Lake Carlos and downstream of Lake Irene in Douglas County.
The DNR also has confirmed that zebra mussels have been found in the Otter Tail River below Orwell Reservoir.
Bemidji man goes missing
BEMIDJI, Minn. – Bemidji police and friends and family of Matt Pulis, 31, are seeking information abot the missing Bemidji man .
Pulis was last seen with two men at about 2:30 a.m. Saturday as he walked away from the Toasty Beavers bar.
Pulis, who did not show up for work Monday and missed a Wednesday appointment to refill his antidepressant medication, sent a text at about 1:30 a.m. Saturday to a friend in Chicago. It was the last time anyone heard from him.
Pulis is described as 5-foot-9, about 180 pounds, with chin-length brown hair and blue eyes. Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to call the Bemidji Police Department at 333-9111.
Pulis’ ATM card was used at about 8:30 p.m. Monday to withdraw $60 cash in Bemidji, his sister, Steph Kniefel said.
According to the Facebook group, Help Us Find Matt Pulis, Bemidji police are working with Wells Fargo to obtain video surveillance of the ATM transaction.
Police also are reviewing video surveillance from downtown bars, the Facebook group reported.
Bemidji Police Chief Mike Mastin did not provide any additional details Thursday afternoon.
(BP) Pulis mug shot
Backhoe accident kills worker
HASTINGS, Minn. -- A Hastings man was killed Monday morning when a backhoe tipped over and fell on top of him.
A Jordan, Minn., company, S.M. Hentges & Son Inc., was contracted to dredge a drainage pond just across Highway 5 from the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport, said Patrick Hogan, spokesman for the Metropolitan Airports Commission.
Jeffrey Tukua, 46, was driving a backhoe on the project at about 10 a.m. Because of the muddy ground, he was laying down wooden planks for the backhoe to sit on when the machine tipped over on top of him. Tukua was pronounced dead at the scene.
Man killed in collision
GRANITE FALLS, Minn. — An 80-year-old Granite Falls man died as a result of injuries sustained in a two-vehicle crash around 1:20 p.m. Tuesday along U.S. Highway 212 west of Granite Falls.
According to the State Patrol, Roger O. Tjosvold was driving a 2010 Chrysler van and turned left into the path of a 2001 Chevy pickup driven by Anne M. Myhre, 70, of Granite Falls.
Both drivers were taken to Granite Falls Hospital. Myhre sustained non-life threatening injuries.
Tjosvold was not wearing his seat belt. Myhre was wearing her belt.
(WCT, filed Wednesday)
Dakota Resource Council plans Bakken discussion
BISMARCK – Two ranchers and a member of the Three Affiliated Tribes will lead a panel discussion Saturday on oil development and what can be done to improve living and working conditions in the Bakken.
The discussion, part of the Dakota Resource Council’s annual meeting, is from 3:15 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at the AmVets Club, 2402 Railroad Ave., Bismarck.
Speakers are Donny Nelson, a McKenzie County farmer and rancher, Brenda Jorgenson, a Mountrail County farmer and rancher, and Theodora Bird Bear, who lives and works on the Fort Berthold Reservation.
The theme of the Dakota Resource Council’s 35th annual meeting is “Build a Better Bakken.” For more information, call (701) 224-8587.
$2.5M awarded for oil-impacted counties
BISMARCK – The North Dakota Board of University and School Lands Board on Thursday awarded $2.5 million in energy impact grants to help fund affordable housing for teachers and enhance public safety in the Oil Patch.
The grants are part of the state’s $135 million Energy Impact Grant Fund created to address impacts from rapid oil and gas development.
Six school districts will receive dollars for teacher housing, with the largest grant of $600,000 awarded for teacher housing in Stanley. Other grants will support school renovations, dust control, a road overlay, security surveillance, increased signage for student safety and modifications to a jail to accommodate more inmates.
For a complete list of the awards, visit www.nd.gov/energyimpact.
The Land Board is expected to award another $2.5 million in grants in December.
Chinese food buyer to visit N.D. crop facilities
FARGO – Five executives from the China SDIC International Trade Co. will tour North Dakota Sunday through Wednesday as a follow-up to the North Dakota Trade Office and North Dakota Department of Agriculture China trade mission in March.
SDIC Trade is a large food importer and has built a distribution network covering all of China.
The executives will visit with local leaders, discuss educational collaboration opportunities and tour regional agricultural facilities, including JM Grain, North Dakota Mill, Northstar Agri Industries, Red River Commodities, SK Food International, Specialty Commodities and United Pulse Trading.
They will also meet with Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley, Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring, NDTO and North Dakota State University.
North Dakota products of particular interest to SDIC Trade include canola oil, peas, wheat flour, lentils, flaxseed, flaxseed oil and seed varieties.