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REGIONAL BRIEFS: Man killed in shooting on Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation

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Duluth police find no evidence of abduction

DULUTH -- No one has been reported missing and there’s no evidence anyone was abducted in Duluth’s Lincoln Park neighborhood Wednesday evening despite a report from a teenage girl who said her friend had been taken against her will by men in a black SUV, police said.

Police said Thursday that they had 20 officers involved in the investigation Wednesday evening and that it remains their “top priority” even though they could find no one who fit the name or description of the allegedly abducted girl.

According to police, the 16-year-old girl who reported the abduction said the 14-year-old victim was an American Indian named Jessica Martin or Jessica Martineau and that she knew the victim from school.

But Duluth police can’t find anyone with those names, or anyone from the same school named Jessica who isn’t accounted for. They also have no reports of anyone missing across the country fitting the description or name.

But Lt. Mike Ceynowa of the department’s major crime bureau added that the department will continue to investigate until it finds the victim or determines conclusively that no crime was committed. Authorities say they have no reason to believe the girl reporting the crime was not being truthful and are hopeful she may recall more details.


Special session could dump ag tax

REDWOOD FALLS, Minn. -- Gov. Mark Dayton says he is willing to overturn a new sales tax on farm implement repair when the Legislature meets next month to appropriate money for disaster relief.

Dayton told reporters Thursday after he spoke at Farmfest that he and legislative leaders are looking at a Sept. 9 special session to provide state funding for local governments in 18 counties affected by June storms and flooding. The money would match federal funds being sent to help local governments rebuild.

While Dayton had insisted that only disaster relief be considered during the one-day session, he said he now is willing to allow lawmakers to overturn the farm tax.

Revenue Commissioner Myron Frans said farmers are paying $2 million a month in the sales tax on farm implement repairs. The tax took effect July. 1.

Dayton called it a bad tax; it was inserted into a bill being debated during the Legislature’s last moments. Other services that are taxed under the new law would not be affected by the special session action, Frans said.


Bull injures visitors to the Dakota County Fair

FARMINGTON, Minn. -- A runaway rodeo bull caused injuries to several visitors to the Dakota County Fair on Wednesday evening.

The bull escaped from his pen, then broke through the gates and ran through the fairgrounds.

Eight people were injured in the incident, according to Dakota County Sheriff Dave Bellows.

The most seriously injured person was Cottage Grove resident Barbara Goggins, who was taken by helicopter to Hennepin County Medical Center. A sheriff’s deputy who shot the bull also was transported to a hospital but was treated and released.

None of the other people who were injured at the fairgrounds south of the Twin Cities required transportation to a hospital.

The bull escaped from the pen in front of the grandstand, then broke through a gate leading to a parking area near the midway. The bull was shot twice and eventually roped and led back to a secured area.


Bauer family plans for world record reunion

HASTINGS, Minn. -- In two years, the Bauer family in Hastings will try to break a Guinness world record with the biggest reunion ever.

The current world record is held by the Lilly family in Flat Top, W.Va. The family had 2,585 people at its reunion in August 2009.

In 2000, the Bauer family got about 1,700 people together for its last big reunion. That event centered on the descendants of Chris and Anna Bauer.

“It was a great success,” said Linda Drellack, an organizer for the next reunion. “It was the first (Bauer family) reunion of its kind.”

Since then, the family has been talking about putting together another one. In June, volunteers held a kickoff meeting for a 2015 reunion. While doing initial research online, Drellack came across the Lilly family’s record and got the idea to try to break it.

The organizers hope to get 2,000 to 3,000 people at Hastings’ Little Log House Village in 2015.

Organizers are looking for more people who want to get involved with the planning process. For more information, call Drellack at (651) 438-2950 or email, or visit the website at


Esko man dies in tractor accident

ESKO, Minn. -- A 76-year-old Esko man died from injuries suffered in a tractor accident Wednesday evening.

The Carlton County Sheriff’s Office said authorities were called to Hillside Road, west of Esko and just south of County Highway 61, about 7:45 p.m. on a report of a man who had fallen off a tractor and was injured.

The man, identified as Willard Quiram, was treated at the scene by Esko first responders, Cloquet paramedics and Carlton County deputies. He was transported to St. Luke’s hospital in Duluth and later died from his injuries, officials said.


Photographer pleads guilty to peeping on girl

HIBBING, Minn. -- The owner of an Eveleth photography business pleaded guilty Thursday to peeping on an underage girl who was changing in a dressing room at his studio.

Donald Louis Peterson, 56, of Gilbert, will avoid jail time if he meets the conditions of his probation. Sentencing is set for Oct. 10 in Hibbing before Judge Mark Starr.

Under the terms of the agreement, Peterson will receive two years of supervised probation, pay a $1,000 fine and must undergo a psychosexual evaluation. The second year of probation could be unsupervised, if recommended by his probation officer.

According to court documents, an Eveleth police officer was flagged down Aug. 31, 2012, by a boy who reported that his girlfriend was getting her graduation photos taken at the Thomas Leonard Studio and he saw Peterson looking through a hole in the wall while she was in the dressing room.

Two Eveleth police officers went to the studio Sept. 4 and talked to Peterson, who showed them the dressing room and storage room. An officer spotted a piece of wood closing an approximate 2-inch gap in the wall about 7 feet off the ground. Photographs were taken of the room. One of the girls told officers she could hear Peterson moving things around behind the dressing room while she was changing clothes.


Mandatory eFiling to begin in several counties

ST. PAUL -- Attorneys and government agencies are required to file civil and family cases electronically beginning Sept. 16 in district courts in Cass, Clay, Cook, Dakota, Faribault, Kandiyohi, Lake, Morrison and Washington counties of Minnesota.

All documents filed electronically in all case types must be submitted in a searchable PDF format.

The requirement does not apply to probate/mental health, adoption, child protection or conciliation court cases or to self-represented litigants wishing to file these case types.

The nine courts have served as pilot sites for the Minnesota Judicial Branch eCourtMN Initiative, which seeks to move courts from paper files to electronic case records.  Electronic filing for these types of cases has been mandatory in Hennepin and Ramsey counties since Sept. 1, 2012.

Those seeking to eFile must first establish an account on the Judicial Branch eFiling and eService System. Training on how to create an account and how to eFile is available via the website or in person on a limited basis. For the training schedule and other information, visit


North Dakota

Fargo fugitive caught in Cambodia

FARGO -- A man wanted by federal authorities for his involvement in a metro-area drug ring was arrested Thursday in Cambodia.

Christopher James Peterson, 37, was tracked by members of the U.S. Marshals Service High Plains Fugitive Task Force in Fargo.

A warrant was issued June 5 for Peterson’s arrest, charging him with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance.

Peterson was indicted on charges that allege he and several others distributed more than 500 grams of methamphetamine in North Dakota, Minnesota, California and other states, according to a news release from the High Plains Fugitive Task Force.

A deputy U.S. marshal from the task force coordinated an effort to find Peterson. Information was developed indicating Peterson had left the United States in May for Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and the State Department eventually revoked Peterson’s passport, the release stated.

Cambodian authorities were then able to arrest Peterson on immigration charges.

Peterson is in a Cambodian jail awaiting extradition back to the United States.


Fargo police probe Facebook threat against Northwood

NORTHWOOD, N.D. -- Police are investigating threats made on a Fargo man’s Facebook page that triggered a lockdown at a Northwood nursing home Wednesday.

Lt. Joel Vettle of the Fargo Police Department said part of the investigation included who posted the threats on Troy Larson’s Facebook account.

Authorities said Wednesday the comments were threats against the school.

Sue Holweger, who identified herself as Larson’s aunt, said he was using Facebook from a computer at the Fargo Public Library and forgot to log out when he left. Then someone posted the threats on his page.

No one has been arrested, Vettle said.


Man accused of ditching baby to flee police

FARGO -- A Fargo man is charged with felony child abuse after allegedly abandoning his baby in a stroller while he was being chased by police.

Kenneth Eagleman, 26, of Fargo, was charged Tuesday in Cass County District Court with one count of Class C felony child abuse or neglect.

According to court documents, just after 3 p.m. Monday, a Walmart security officer reported that Eagleman, who had been barred from the store and was wanted on arrest warrants, was at the 13th Avenue South store.

An officer saw Eagleman pushing the stroller in a parking lot and pulled up his car to instruct Eaglemen to stop. Eagleman said he hadn’t done anything and kept going, documents say.

When the officer yelled at him to stop again, Eagleman allegedly took off running and left the child, a 2-year-old girl, in the business’s driveway. Police say he led officers on a foot chase through at least three city blocks and heavy traffic. Eventually, a Scheels store worker grabbed Eagleman and held him for arresting officers.

When taken to jail, Eagleman told officers he knew about the warrants and figured he’d be going to jail whether or not he left the child behind, according to court records.

Eagleman is set to appear in court Sept. 3. He’s also charged in Fargo Municipal Court with resisting arrest, a Class B misdemeanor.


Heitkamp honored for efforts for N.D. farmers

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The National Farmers Union has awarded U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., with its 2013 Golden Triangle Award for her efforts on behalf of North Dakota’s farmers and ranchers.

The award is presented to members of Congress who show exceptional leadership on issues affecting farmers and rural America.

Heitkamp is a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee and helped draft a farm bill that meets the specific needs of North Dakota producers.


South Dakota

Life term possible with new charge in fatal crash

PICKSTOWN, S.D. -- The man arrested in a July 8 crash that killed two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service employees could now face life in prison.

Attorney General Marty Jackley and Charles Mix County States Attorney Thomas Deadrick announced Thursday that Ronald Ray Fischer, 29, of Lake Andes, was indicted Monday by a Charles Mix County grand jury.

Fischer was indicted on two counts of first-degree manslaughter, a felony with a maximum penalty of life in prison and a $50,000 fine, and two counts of vehicular homicide, a felony with a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and a $30,000 fine. He is also charged with one count of driving a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and one count of ingesting a nonalcoholic substance to become intoxicated, both misdemeanors.

The charges stem from a crash that killed Dr. Robert Klumb, 46, of Pierre, and Maegen Spindler, 25, of Cazenovia, N.Y. Klumb was the lead research biologist in the Pierre office for U.S. Fish and Wildlife. Cazenovia was working as a fisheries technician assistant.

A blood sample indicated Fischer had a blood-alcohol content of 0.232, nearly three times the legal driving limit, when the vehicle he was driving struck and killed Klumb and Spindler, who were on foot in a hotel parking lot in Pickstown, court documents say.



Man killed in shooting on Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation

HAYWARD, Wis. -- A 26-year-old man is dead from a gunshot wound after an incident Wednesday night on the Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation in Sawyer County.

According to the Sawyer County Sheriff’s Office, a 911 call came in about 11:30 p.m. reporting that someone had been shot in an apartment on the reservation. Sawyer County sheriff’s deputies, Lac Courte Oreilles police and emergency medical services responded.

The initial investigation confirmed a deceased subject with a gunshot wound. The case is being investigated by the Sawyer County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the reservation police and the state Division of Criminal Investigations and Wisconsin State Patrol.

The man was not a resident of the apartment, said Brigette Kornbroke, chief deputy of the sheriff’s office.

The victim’s name had not yet been released Thursday afternoon. Authorities also said they would not yet say whether the shooting was accidental, self-inflicted or a homicide.


Jeff Holmquist
Jeff Holmquist has been managing editor of the New Richmond News since 2004. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and business administration from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. He has previously worked as editor in Wadena, Minn.; Detroit Lakes, Minn.; Hutchinson, Minn.; and Bloomington, Minn. He also was previously owner of the Osceola Sun, Stillwater Courier and Scandia Messenger along with his wife. Together they previously founded and published The Old Times newspaper for antiques and collectibles collectors; and Up!, a Christian magazine of hope and encouragement.
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