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MN State News

Minnesota governor says graduation ceremony ban was painful

By STEVE KARNOWSKI Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota essentially banned large-scale high school and college graduation ceremonies for the class of 2020 on Friday to limit the spread of the coronavirus, dashing the spirits of students who had been holding out hope for traditional ...

Some blame meatpacking workers, not plants, for virus spread

By STEVE KARNOWSKI Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — As coronavirus hotspots erupted at major U.S. meatpacking plants, experts criticized extremely tight working conditions that made the factories natural high risk contagion locations. But some Midwestern politicians have pointed the ...

Amid virus fears, Minneapolis homeless encampment grows

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Metro Transit officials are trying to contain a homeless encampment in Minneapolis that has grown to more than 100 people in the last month, as many men and women moved to "Camp Quarantine" amid fears they would catch the coronavirus in crowded shelters. Metro Transit ...

Sports budget crunch: $4M deficit at Minnesota, $5M at W.Va.

By DAVE CAMPBELL AP Sports Writer MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — With the end of this virus-disrupted school year drawing nearer, a predictably bleak financial outlook for major college sports has emerged from the budgeting process. The West Virginia athletic department announced Friday a projected $5 ...

Walz outlines virus ‘battle plan’ at Minnesota nursing homes

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Gov. Tim Walz outlined a "battle plan" Thursday to keep Minnesota long-term care residents and workers safe against COVID-19, which so far has claimed the lives of more than 400 residents of nursing homes or assisted-living facilities in the state. Walz told reporters that ...

Authorities crack down on speeding motorists during pandemic

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota's law enforcement officers have ticketed three times more drivers for speeding over 100 mph compared to the same period last year as some motorists take advantage of the state's empty roadways despite the governor's stay-home directive, authorities said. State ...

Suit alleges Minnesota deputies tried roadside body search

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota on Wednesday sued in federal court on behalf of a woman who alleges deputies tried to conduct a body cavity search of her on a roadside in freezing weather. Kelli Jo Torres said she was a passenger in a car pulled over in ...

Minnesotans urged to fish close to home to slow COVID-19

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesotans should fish close to home to help curb the coronavirus pandemic when the walleye season opens this weekend, avoiding overnight stays and driving no further than they can go on one tank of gas, Department of Natural Resources officials said Wednesday. A surge in ...

BCA: Willmar man killed himself while confronting police

WILLMAR, Minn. (AP) — A Willmar man cut his throat and killed himself in a confrontation with police that injured an officer last week, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said Tuesday. Officers were called to a domestic incident at a Willmar home early Friday. Officer Nicole ...

Pandemic projected to take $4B bite out of Minnesota budget

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The COVID-19 pandemic is projected to take a nearly $4 billion bite out of Minnesota's budget, swallowing up the state's rainy day fund, Gov. Tim Walz's budget officials reported Tuesday. Minnesota Management and Budget said it now projects a nearly $2.43 billion deficit ...

Minnesota man faces more charges in string of sex assaults

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Prosecutors have charged a Ham Lake man suspected in a string of sex crimes in the Minneapolis area in three new cases. The Hennepin County Attorney's Office on Tuesday charged Jory Wiebrand, 34, in three separate cases of criminal sexual conduct, burglary and ...

Minnesota GOP lawmaker compares homelessness to camping

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Republican state senator from northern Minnesota is drawing criticism after posting a video questioning why campgrounds for leisure activities are closed while homeless people can live in tents during the coronavirus pandemic. Sen. Justin Eichorn, a freshman lawmaker ...

Mourners remember man killed during traffic crash fight

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — About 50 people gathered on a scenic overlook in St. Paul to mourn a father of four who was fatally shot during an altercation over a car accident. The mourners released balloons Sunday in honor of 39-year-old Douglas Lewis. Police say he was killed Friday night along ...

Pressure builds to allow more Minnesota businesses to reopen

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Republicans kept up the pressure Monday on Democratic Gov. Tim Walz to move faster toward allowing more businesses to reopen so they can survive the COVID-19 pandemic, while the governor said his administration is actively making plans for how to accomplish that — but ...

Star Tribune’s Jill Burcum Pulitzer finalist for editorial

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Star Tribune editorial writer Jill Burcum was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist Monday for her piece last November on the proposed Twin Metals copper-nickel mine in northern Minnesota. The judges praised Burcum "for passionate, persuasive writing about a pristine wilderness ...

Minnesota GOP to block building bill until Walz ends powers

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota House Republicans have vowed to block Gov. Tim Walz's proposal to borrow money for public construction projects unless the Democrat ends his COVID-19 emergency powers. House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt, a Republican from Crown, said Saturday it is "important ...

BCA probing Willmar incident that left 1 dead, cop injured

WILLMAR, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said one man was killed and a Willmar police officer was seriously injured after an incident early Friday, though the cause of the man's death wasn't immediately clear. The BCA said Willmar police were called to a home on a ...

The Latest: Minntac to lay off 260 due to slowed demand

DULUTH, Minn. (AP) — The Latest on the coronavirus outbreak in Minnesota (all times local): U.S. Steel has announced it will lay off 260 workers at its Minntac operation in Mountain Iron as the coronavirus pandemic has cut demand for steel. The layoffs were announced Friday. The Star ...

Pandemic aggravates Minnesota care center staffing shortages

By STEVE KARNOWSKI Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Staffing has become such a challenge at some Minnesota care facilities due to the coronavirus outbreak that a few aren't sure how they're going to get through the weekend, the head of an industry group said Friday. Minnesota's ...

The Latest: Judge orders DOC to respond to Moose Lake claims

MOOSE LAKE, Minn. (AP) — The Latest on the coronavirus outbreak in Minnesota (all times local): 7:50 p.m. A judge has ordered the Minnesota Department of Corrections to show that it is protecting inmates at the Moose Lake prison from COVID-19. The American Civil Liberties Union of ...