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REGIONAL BRIEFS: Former clerk-treasurer charged over missing money

From the Forum News Service

North Dakota

Woman killed in one-car accident

WILLISTON, N.D. -- A 64-year-old Zahl woman was killed in a one-vehicle accident Wednesday night near Williston.

According to the North Dakota Highway Patrol, Leona Osman was driving a 2011 Toyota Camry east on Highway 1804 just east of Williston.

Osman's car left the roadway, entered the north ditch and the Toyota flew over a creek before it came to a stop.

While an airbag did deploy, Osman was declared dead on the scene.

(WH- Not for Web)

Man who died of exposure identified

HANNAH, N.D. -- A man who who apparently died from exposure after his vehicle became stuck on a flood road has been identified as Steve Feil, 51, the North Dakota Highway Patrol said Thursday.

Feil's body was found near his home Wednesday. The patrol said Feil waded through icy water and tried to walk home Tuesday night. The air temperature was as low as 27 degrees that night.

Hannah is near the Canadian border in northwestern Cavalier County, about 75 miles north of Devils Lake.


Hose clamp found in search of digestive tract

FARGO -- Cass County deputies executed a search warrant last week on the digestive tract of a jail inmate after he was suspected of putting cracks in his jail cell windows using an object he was hiding in his body.

The search was conducted last week and turned up a plumbing hose clamp.

Cass County sheriff's Sgt. Tara Morris said a search warrant on a digestive tract is "very, very uncommon," but she could not speak to the specifics due to federal medical privacy laws.

Generally, Morris said the means of conducting such a search would be decided on a case-by-case basis that takes into account advice of a doctor.

"It could be that they watch for bathroom breaks," she said, although an MRI or other medical scanning technologies were also possible options.

The inmate, Carlos Ray Kidd, 33, of Stanford, Ky., is being held on federal charges of mailing threatening communications, according to charges filed in U.S. District Court in Fargo in November. Kidd is accused of sending a letter to U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Hovland threatening to kill the judge.

Kidd will not face any criminal charges related to the latest incident, Morris said.


Death at Spirit Lake investigated as homicide

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- The FBI and Bureau of Indian Affairs police are investigating an apparent homicide on the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation, an FBI spokesman said Thursday.

Kyle Loven, an FBI special agent and spokesman in Minneapolis, said a team had been sent to the reservation to work with BIA police in gathering and analyzing evidence relating to the "recent" death of an American Indian male.

"We don't have answers for when this occurred precisely, so we can't speculate," Loven said, but he confirmed that the death was being investigated as a homicide.

A victim's name was circulating on the reservation Thursday, as well as reports of two or three men in custody, but Loven said he could not identify the man pending notification of next of kin. Also, "We can't confirm or deny whether anyone is in custody at this time," he said.

"We are in the early stages of investigation and sifting through the facts ourselves."

BIA law enforcement officials at Spirit Lake and at regional BIA headquarters in Aberdeen, S.D., declined to respond to questions about the incident, deferring to the FBI as the lead investigative agency.



Plea deal reached in crash that killed Moorhead boy

MOORHEAD, Minn. -- A Moorhead teen facing charges in a car crash that killed a fellow Moorhead High School student pleaded guilty Thursday as part of a plea agreement.

Kullen Jerome Carney, 17, the driver in the Aug. 9 crash that killed Austin Wagar, 17, was charged in October in connection with the crash. Another boy in the car, Brendan Daly, 17, was injured.

Clay County District Court records show Carney pleaded guilty to the most serious of the five charges he faced, a felony count of criminal vehicular homicide. Records show a plea deal was reached, but attorneys said they couldn't disclose details of the deal.

Sentencing is set for June 10, after a predisposition sentencing investigation is conducted.

Investigating officers believe high speed was a factor in the crash and driver inattention may have been a contributing factor, court documents state.

Carney, who was 16 at the time of the crash, was charged under Minnesota's Extended Jurisdiction Juvenile law, which hands down two sentences - one juvenile and one adult.

The juvenile sanction is enforced and the individual remains under the jurisdiction of the juvenile system until he or she turns 21. An adult sentence is also issued and may be imposed if the orders of the juvenile court are violated.


South Dakota

Missing South Dakota man found dead

RAVINIA, S.D. -- An 83-year-old Ravinia man who was missing for more than five weeks has been found dead.

According to a news release issued Thursday by the Charles Mix County Sheriff's Office, the body of Harold Cavier, who had been missing since March 26, was found Wednesday by law enforcement in a farm field about two miles east of Corsica. That's about 25 miles north of Ravinia.

When Cavier was reported missing, authorities said he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease and other medical conditions.

The sheriff's office declined to say whether a cause of death has been determined and did not release further information.

The Charles Mix County Sheriff's Office, Douglas County Sheriff's Office and state Division of Criminal Investigation are continuing to investigate, the news release said.



Storm dumps heavy snow, knocks out power

HAYWARD, Wis. -- A rare May winter storm brought heavy snow to northwestern Wisconsin on Thursday, with several towns reporting more than a foot.

Hayward in Sawyer County reported 16 inches of snow.

According to the National Weather Service, the snow was expected to wind down late Thursday, with a snow/rain mixture with possible freezing rain in today's forecast.

The heavy, wet snow caused tree branches to down power lines, causing power outages. Xcel Energy crews had restored service to more than half of the customers who experienced outages. As of Thursday afternoon, 13,000 Xcel Energy customers in Wisconsin were without power. The total number of customers in Wisconsin without power was 30,000.

Including southeastern Minnesota, the number of customers affected in the two states was 54,000. Xcel Energy anticipated having most customers restored to service by Thursday night, but due to continuing weather factors and hazardous road conditions, all customers were not expected to be restored until the end of today.


Minnesotan killed in semi-truck crash

MENOMONIE, Wis. -- A 45-year-old Stacy, Minn., man is dead and a 48-year-old Illinois man is injured after two trucks crashed Thursday along Interstate 94.

The semi-trailers crashed about 12:55 a.m. about six miles west of Menomonie, forcing traffic to be diverted off I-94, according to the Wisconsin State Patrol.

The victims' names had not been released Thursday.

The driver who was killed drove for Logistics Services Inc. out of Eagan, Minn. He died at the scene.

The driver of the second rig was taken to an area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, the patrol said. He was identified only as a 48-year-old man from Matton, Ill.


Former clerk-treasurer charged over missing money

WASCOTT, Wis. -- Wascott's former clerk-treasurer faces charges in connection with money missing from town's coffers during her tenure.

Valda Bremanis, 66, of Gulf Breeze, Fla., faces two counts of felony misconduct in public office and one count of felony theft in a public office setting. During a hearing Wednesday in Douglas County Circuit Court, Bremanis waived her right to a preliminary hearing.

Bremanis served as clerk-treasurer in Wascott from 1999 until she resigned in 2009.

A 2010 audit of the town's finances for 2007 and 2008 revealed $72,426 was missing. Anderson, Hagen & Moe, certified public accountants of Hayward, found that misappropriation of funds dated back to 2001.

Bremanis is accused of falsifying records to cover up the misappropriation of town funds to her personal accounts and falsify board action that resulted in her husband, the former town assessor, receiving a $20,000 bonus.

Bremanis has maintained that her husband, Andre Bremanis, was unaware of her actions.

The discrepancies were first discovered when a Wascott resident started making inquiries into the town's finances. The Wisconsin Department of Justice's Division of Criminal Investigation launched an investigation in 2008.

Arraignment on the charges is set for June 14.