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ELECTION 2022 MINNESOTA GOVERNOR

GOP contestant Scott Jensen announces crime-fighting plan

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (AP) – Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Jensen has announced a crime-fighting plan that would increase penalties for violent crimes while strengthening the role of the Minnesota State Patrol and National Guard. His 10-point proposal would create a specific crime for carjacking, which has skyrocketed in the Twin Cities. He would increase jail terms for violent crimes and prevent nonprofit groups from bailing out people accused of violent crimes. And he says he would appoint judges who would impose the longest sentences allowed. Democrats were quick to criticize Jensen’s plan, pointing out that it doesn’t include new money to bolster local police departments.

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CARJACKING FEES-MINNESOTA

2 face federal counts in conspiracy to hijack Uber and Lyft drivers

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Two men have been charged in an alleged conspiracy to violently rob and kidnap Uber and Lyft drivers over a period of several weeks. An 18-year-old man from Brooklyn Park and a 20-year-old man from Minneapolis were named in a 20-count indictment Wednesday, charging them with conspiracy, gun wielding, aiding and abetting carjacking and other crimes. The charges come weeks after US Attorney Andy Luger announced a new strategy to tackle violent crime in the Twin Cities metro area. As part of his plan, he said all adult carjackers will be charged and prosecuted under federal law.

DANGER! METEOROLOGIST

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Minnesota meteorologist takes home $75,000 for Jeopardy!

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (AP) – A Minnesota meteorologist has won more than $75,000 in three days on “Jeopardy!” The St. Paul Pioneer Press reports that Eric Ahasic took home his biggest win on Wednesday, $35,600, taking his total winnings to $75,600. He earned $5,000 in Final Jeopardy! Segment that provided this response: “A participant in that 1773 event recalled, ‘Some of our numbers jumped in the hold… I’ve never worked harder in my life.’ ‘ Ahasic told the Boston Tea Party, which was the correct answer. Its fourth episode airs Thursday afternoon.

tribal land

Minnesota tribe to get back 28,000 acres

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minnesota tribe is to be reclaimed 28,000 acres that the federal government sold in the 1800s. Minnesota Public Radio reports that the land is within the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa Reservation, but the tribe lost ownership of it after the federal government divided it into lots and sold it under the General Allotment Act of 1887. The nonprofit Conservation Fund purchased the land as part of a major purchase from logging company PotlatchDeltic in 2020 with the intention of returning it to the tribe. Tribal leader Cathy Chavers says the land is used for hunting, fishing and berry gathering.

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RV DRUG DEALER

RV meth dealer sentenced to 27 years in prison

SIOUX FALLS, SD (AP) – A Minnesota man accused of trafficking drugs from an RV has been sentenced to 27 years in prison. A federal indictment alleges that 62-year-old Frank Stewart was involved in a drug ring that distributed massive amounts of methamphetamine in South Dakota and elsewhere. Stewart of Browns Valley, Minnesota, pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance. Two other defendants were charged in the case. Stewart was arrested last year in Todd County, Minnesota, where police searched his RV and discovered half a pound of meth, more than $9,000 in cash and two firearms.

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LEGISLATION-ETHICS

Senator Omar Fateh denies GOP claims of ethics violations

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — An attorney for state Sen. Omar Fateh says the Minneapolis Democrat has never been endorsed by a YouTube channel that serves the local Somali community, and says his endorsement of unsuccessful legislation is to the nonprofit Therefore, giving the organization a grant of US$500,000 is not a reward for supporting the channel. The Senate Ethics Subcommittee heard from attorney Kristin Hendrick in the first of at least two sessions Wednesday to determine if there is likely grounds for formally investigating allegations made against Fateh by a group of Republican senators. The lawyer says Fateh paid for the ads and did not receive free advertising from the channel.

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DRUG SEARCHES – OFFICER CONVINCED

Former Minneapolis cop convicted in drug case

MINNNEAPOLIS (AP) — A former Minneapolis police officer convicted of stealing drugs from dubious traffic stops has been sentenced to more than three years in prison. Ty Jindra was found guilty of stealing tramadol, methamphetamine and oxycodone in November. In two cases he made false reports and in one case he hid the discovery of pills, according to prosecutors. Jindra, 29, was also convicted of two civil rights violations, once for stopping a driver at a gas station for violating a license plate number and once for running over three youths in a vehicle that went slowly past a stop sign. Both times he was accused of conducting illegal searches.

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AP US OIL Spill SHIPPING

Coast Guard: Oil spill shuts down shipping on St. Mary’s River

SAULT STE. Marie, Ontario. (AP) – The US Coast Guard says an oil spill has halted shipping on the St. Mary’s River between Ontario and Michigan’s upper peninsula. The Coast Guard said Thursday the 5,300-gallon spill came from Algoma Steel in Sault Sainte Marie, Ontario. The Coast Guard is asking all traffic to stay away from the affected area. The river is said to be closed to navigation until further notice. The 75-mile river connects Lakes Superior and Huron and serves as part of the Michigan-Ontario border. Algoma spokeswoman Brenda Stenta said in a statement that “the source of the spill has been safely contained.”

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