Man with 28 DWIs dies weeks after leaving prison

By |2020-10-28T11:56:11-05:00October 28th, 2020|

A Minnesota man with 28 arrests for drunken driving has died weeks after leaving prison for his latest offense. An obituary says 67-year-old Danny Lee Bettcher, of New York Mills, died last week from what his family said was natural causes. Bettcher was released from the Moose Lake prison on Sept. 28 and placed on supervised release after he was sentenced in 2018 by an Otter Tail County judge for driving drunk, his 28 offense. Bettcher had a valid driver’s license despite spending much of the past 10 years in and out of jails and prison for drinking and driving.

MPLS teen who filmed George Floyd incident to receive PEN award for courage

By |2020-10-28T11:50:28-05:00October 28th, 2020|

Darnella Frazier, the Minneapolis teenager who captured cellphone video of George Floyd’s killing by police is receiving an award for courage from the literary and human rights organization PEN. "I mean if you think about a young woman in a public scene with a whole group of police officers there who has the presence of mind and the guts to start her camera rolling and say "I'm going to capture this" PEN CEO Suzanne Nossel says with nothing more than a cell phone, Frazier changed the course of history in America. Darnella Frazier will receive the Benenson Courage Award from PEN [...]

Halloween likely to look a little different this year

By |2020-10-28T11:44:37-05:00October 28th, 2020|

Traditional Halloween activities are fun, but some can increase the risk of getting or spreading COVID-19 or influenza. The U-of-M's Dr. Beth Thielen encourages families to find alternate ways to participate in Halloween. "Think of creative ways to maintain that social connection but maybe in a safer way that in a little bit more of a social distance and not doing those activities that you think are the highest risk." Thielen also encourages you to avoid direct contact with trick-or-treaters, give out treats outdoors, if possible. Set up a station with individually bagged treats for kids to take. Wash hands before [...]

US Attorney announces $300 million elder fraud case

By |2020-10-28T11:40:47-05:00October 28th, 2020|

The U-S Attorney’s Office in Minnesota announced indictments in what it calls the nation's largest elder fraud case. "This case accounts for at least $300 million in losses to at least 150,000 victims across the United States." U-S Attorney from Minneapolis Erica MacDonald says 60 people are indicted accused of defrauding mostly elderly victims in fraudulent magazine subscriptions. The scam was thwarted by federal law enforcement after a month-long undercover operation.

COVID Cases Rise by 1,916 in MN (Oct. 28)

By |2020-10-28T11:08:20-05:00October 28th, 2020|

Daily Update: Because all data is preliminary, the change in number of cumulative positive cases and deaths from one day to the next may not equal the newly reported cases or deaths. Total positive cases (cumulative) 139,444 Total confirmed cases (PCR positive) (cumulative) 138,944 Total probable cases (Antigen positive) (cumulative) 500 Newly reported cases 1,916 Newly reported confirmed cases 1,804 Newly reported probable cases 112 Newly reported cases detail County Newly reported confirmed cases Newly reported probable cases Aitkin 1 2 Anoka 99 21 Becker 16 0 Beltrami 14 0 Benton 28 2 Big Stone 10 0 Blue Earth 19 0 [...]

When changing clocks, change batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

By |2020-10-28T09:41:01-05:00October 28th, 2020|

A great time to check and test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, including new models that use a battery with a 10-year life span, is during daylight saving time on Sunday, November 1. These alarms provide an early warning for residents in case of a fire or elevated levels of carbon monoxide, an odorless and colorless gas. "Fires can spread quickly and carbon monoxide cannot be detected by smell or sight so it's important to ensure these early warning tools are properly installed and working," says Sean Hayes, commander--risk management. "A simple test can help save lives." For safety and to [...]

General Election: Less Than a Week until Election Day

By |2020-10-28T08:57:07-05:00October 28th, 2020|

The November 3 General Elections is a week away. Blue Earth County still has nearly 5,500 mail-in ballots that have not been returned.  Voters are reminded to return their ballots as soon as possible.  There are many options for Blue Earth County voters to return ballots. If voters have received a ballot in the mail, ballots and the provided envelopes can be returned through the mail as all postage is pre-paid (must be postmarked no later than November 3 and received by November 10). If voters have received a ballot but wish to vote in person, they should bring those materials [...]

Mankato Schools to hold community engagement sessions on use of school resource officers

By |2020-10-28T06:23:39-05:00October 28th, 2020|

Mankato Area Public Schools is hosting community engagement sessions that will focus on the use of school resource officers in the district. Mankato Area Public Schools' cultural liaisons will be present during engagement sessions, which will be facilitated by Equity Specialist Stacy Wells in partnership with facilitators from the Greater Mankato Diversity Council and Mankato YWCA. The public is invited to participate in the sessions. For health and safety due to COVID-19, registration is required because capacity is limited. Register on the Mankato Area Public Schools' website. Social distancing will be in place and face coverings/masks must be worn.

Important Minnesota high court race sits on back of ballot

By |2020-10-28T06:18:42-05:00October 28th, 2020|

Minnesota voters may be fixated on the presidential or other high-profile races, but there’s an important contest on the back of the ballot. Minnesota Supreme Court Associate Justice Paul Thissen is facing voters for the first time since his appointment in 2018. Challenging him is frequent candidate Michelle MacDonald. She's making her fourth bid for a seat on a court that has disciplined her before over professional conduct, and could impose new restrictions on her law license. Both candidates are hoping voters turn over their ballots. In 2016, 26% fewer votes were cast for Supreme Court justice than for president.

State encouraging more businesses to consider disability hires

By |2020-10-28T06:17:05-05:00October 28th, 2020|

The State of Minnesota is using the occasion of National Disability Employment Awareness Month to call on more Minnesota businesses to consider hiring workers with a disability. State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Director Dee Torgerson says the goal of their effort is simple. "Access and opportunity." At a virtual event yesterday celebrating Minnesota companies that have made the move to hire people with a disability, Torgerson said these workers provide tangible benefits to the companies they work for. "Benefits like increased innovation, improved productivity, and an overall better work environment." Through state programs last year more than 26-hundred workers with a disability [...]

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