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REGIONAL BRIEFS: Dementia patient missing

From the Forum News Service

South Dakota

Prosecution: Killer lured victim with kittens

CHAMBERLAIN, S.D. -- Court documents say a 26-year-old Mitchell woman was killed by her fiance because she was ending their relationship and she was lured to the shed where she was shot by being told there were kittens inside.

In motions filed earlier this month in anticipation of a hearing scheduled for 1:30 p.m. today at the Brule County Courthouse in Chamberlain, prosecutors outline the events they believe led 36-year-old Kent Davidson to kill 26-year-old Crystal Schulz on March 11.

Davidson became suicidal when he found out Schulz was ending their relationship, court documents say, but instead decided to kill Schulz, luring her to a backyard shed by telling her there were kittens inside before shooting her twice with a shotgun.

Davidson was indicted in March for first-degree murder, second-degree murder and manslaughter and possessing a firearm while committing a felony. In April, he pleaded not guilty to all charges.



Grand Rapids woman dies in ATV accident

BEMIDJI, Minn.-- A 36-year-old Grand Rapids woman was killed in an all-terrain vehicle accident Monday morning east of Bemidji

According to the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office, the accident occurred just before 10 a.m. Monday about 22 miles east of Bemidji in Moose Lake Township.

The woman was riding the ATV when it rolled and she became pinned underneath, officials said. Beltrami County deputies, Leech Lake Ambulance and Leech Lake Tribal officers and the Minnesota State Patrol all responded to the call. Sanford AirMED and emergency medical personnel were dispatched to the scene, as well, but lifesaving efforts were not successful, the sheriff's office said. The woman's name is being withheld until all family members are notified.


Dementia patient missing

DULUTH -- The Duluth Police Department was seeking the public’s help Monday in locating a missing 74-year-old woman with dementia.

Dale Elizabeth Gerard, who lives at an assisted-living home in West Duluth called Wesley Residence has not been seen since Saturday.

According to a news release, Gerard boarded an eastbound Duluth Transit Authority bus at 3:15 p.m. Saturday and hasn’t been seen since. She has dementia and is described as a vulnerable adult. She was last seen wearing dark-colored pants, a flowered blouse and a pink sweater.

Gerard is 5 feet 5 inches tall, weighs 155 pounds and has brown eyes and auburn/red hair. She has distinct red marks on her chin, nose and cheeks.

If you have any information about Gerard’s whereabouts, contact the Duluth Police Department at (218) 730-5400 or call 911.


North Dakota

Judge stops N.D. abortion law from taking effect

BISMARCK -- A federal judge has temporarily stopped a strict new North Dakota anti-abortion law from taking effect Aug. 1.

U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland ruled the law prohibiting abortions once a heartbeat is detected, which some say is about six weeks, “is clearly an invalid and unconstitutional law” based on the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision on Roe v. Wade that made abortion legal.

“The state has extended an invitation to an expensive court battle over a law restricting abortions that is a blatant violation of the constitutional guarantees afforded to all women,” Hovland wrote. “The United States Supreme Court has unequivocally said that no state may deprive a woman of the choice to terminate her pregnancy at a point prior to viability.”

The Center for Reproductive Rights filed a lawsuit in June on behalf of the Red River Women’s Clinic, North Dakota’s only abortion clinic in Fargo. The suit argued the six-week ban would effectively shut down the women’s clinic, denying women their right to seek an abortion.

The law was among the abortion restrictions passed by the state Legislature earlier this year.

The two parties now have 30 days to inform the court whether there is a need to schedule a trial.


State senator pleads guilty in drunken driving case

GRAFTON, N.D. — North Dakota Sen. Joe Miller, R-Park River, pleaded guilty to alcohol-related driving charges Monday in state district court here.

He waived his right to trial, he said, because he knows he should not have been drinking and driving.

But Miller has no plans to resign before his term ends in 2016. “I think I’m very much capable of still being an effective legislator,” he said.

Miller, 30, was pulled over around 2:30 a.m. June 21 for speeding near Park River, and the police officer found some beer cans in his car. His blood alcohol content was 0.13, according to court officials.

He admitted he had about eight beers.

Miller was charged with speeding, having an open container and being in actual physical control of a motor vehicle while over the legal alcohol limit, according to court records.


Red River swim prompts 911 call

FARGO – Rescue crews found a woman safe after they were called to the Red River here to search for someone believed to have fallen in Monday afternoon.

Police Lt. Jeff Skuza said the woman’s friend called 911 about 3 p.m. and said her friend had tried to swim cross the river and went missing near the area of Fourth Avenue South and Second Street.

Officers searched the river and the woman’s Fargo home after witnesses reported she had made it across the river and headed there, Skuza said.

The woman was found on the Fargo riverbank less than an hour after her friend called 911.

Although Skuza said it was reckless for the woman to jump into the river, no criminal charges are expected.

“Her friend genuinely thought (the woman) was in trouble,” Skuza said.

The woman’s identity was not released.


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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