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NEWS-Jan 14
News Director: Bev Alquist Call with news at 320-235-2900 or email bahlquist@k-musicradio.com

News Archive

Last night (Sunday), the Meeker County Sheriff's Office responded to a report of a domestic disturbance at a residence on South Milky Way Street in Cosmos. Deputies arrived and after investigation, arrested 33 year old Jeremy Marshall of Sauk Rapids, on charges of domestic assault, disorderly conduct, and probation violation.

Yesterday morning (Sunday), the Meeker County Sheriff’s Office responded to assist the Litchfield Police Department and the Minnesota State Patrol with a report of persons out of control at the Meeker Memorial Hospital in Litchfield. 22 year old Ana Luisa Lopez of Litchfield was arrested for disorderly conduct.

When the Hancock City Council meets tonight (Monday) at seven in the community center, they will be deciding how to proceed with one less member. Voters in 2012 elected Council member Bruce Malo to the position of Mayor, leaving a seat open at the council table. The council has the power to appoint a new member to finish the duration of Malo's term.

Yesterday morning (Sunday) Litchfield Police arrested a 27 year old Litchfield male for disorderly conduct and terroristic threats. The arrest occurred at a MN Hwy 12/735th Avenue, Dassel location. He is being held in the Meeker County Jail pending an appearance in Meeker County District Court.

The Appleton City Council has approved a resolution putting a part time officer onto PERA membership for the city. City Clerk Roman Fiddler says the council has also heard from two other groups, the Appleton Golf Club and Appleton Chamber, both of who are looking for monetary assistance from the city. They will review the city’s budget for 2013 to see if there is a way they can help them at least partially with what they requested.

Police are still following leads after an apparent abduction was reported in Appleton in December. Swift County Sheriff John Holtz says the department has not found a victim, despite a multi-state search. No one has come forward, he says, to establish a missing persons case or to explain whether or not the incident was a domestic incident. Nor has the initial report been proved false. Holtz reports the case will remain open until a victim is discovered or an explanation is uncovered.

District 12 Legislators were sworn in last week. The district encompassing Stevens, Pope, Grant, Traverse, Wilkin and parts of Douglas and Stearns County, elected Senator Torrey Westrom, 12A Representative Jay McNamar (mic-NAY-mur), and District 12B Representative Paul Anderson. McNamar says his first day in session included a vote on a piece of legislation.

Criminal charges have not yet been filed following the disturbance of a cemetery near Herman. On November 20, 2012, the Grant County Sheriff's Office responded to a report that a private family cemetery had possibly been tampered with. In late November, the Sheriff's Office uncovered several grave markers and trees that had been pushed into a hole and buried. No human bones were found. Grant County Attorney Justin Anderson reports his office has yet to receive reports from the Sheriff's office. Sergeant Jon Combs, who is heading the investigation, says there may be evidence now buried under the snow, that will need to be recovered in the spring. Until that time, the case will remain open and the landowner and general public have been barred from accessing the burial plot. Combs reports Minnesota's State Archaeologist will return in the spring to ascertain if any graves were disturbed. At that time, the case will be sent to the County Attorney for review for possible charges.

The Renville County Sheriff’s Office is seeking your assistance in the recovery of items taken associated with a fish house theft in the City of Bird Island in October of 2012. When the fish house was taken, it contained, among other things, a television, a Vexilar fish locator, an Aqua-Vu underwater camera, a Strike Master electric ice auger and a Remington 12 gauge model 870 shotgun. It’s believed these items may be in the Hutchinson area. On January 9th, 2013 the fish house was recovered on a lake in Meeker County. Subsequent to the fish house recovery, Cody Vorbeck of Hutchinson was taken into custody and is being held at the Renville County Jail on pending charges of theft. Renville County Crime Stoppers is offering a reward to anyone with information that will assist law enforcement officials in locating and recovering these items.

Congressman Collin Peterson recently brought together dairy producers from across the state to discuss the politics surrounding dairy policy reform. Peterson says he’s advocated throughout the year in support of dairy reforms in the farm bill, but the Dairy Security Act was not included in the last minute farm bill extension. He says it’s important to hear directly from local producers, to discuss what happened to the farm bill and dairy reform and consider ideas for moving forward. There is a critical need for a better dairy safety net, Peterson says, and he will continue to push for that change.

The Commissioner of Social Security recently announced that the agency is expanding their services by creating a my Social Security account. This personalized online account will be available to current beneficiaries as well as people beginning in their working years. Congressman Collin Peterson says this account will provide recipients with access to their benefit verification letter, payment history, and earnings record.  Eligible workers who will become future recipients of social security can use this account as convenient access to their earnings, benefit information, and estimates of future benefits as they plan retirement. The goal of this online account is to provide faster service to more people in the comfort of their home, office, or local library.  People age 18 and older can sign up for a personal online account. If you plan to sign up be prepared to provide information that only you are likely to know through a secure verification process.

The Humane Society of Kandiyohi/Meeker Counties elected board members at its recent annual meeting. Jim Peterson of Willmar was elected chairman; Darlene Larson of Spicer was elected vice chair, Sharon Mace, secretary, and Melanie Garberich treasurer. Other board members are Lindsay Holtz and Joe Lenz of Litchfield, Jeff Schultz and Jim Butterfield of Willmar, and Brittany VanderBill of Kandiyohi. Mace is new to the board, as is Mike Huberty of Eden Valley. Retiring board members are Brenda DeGrote of Willmar and Wally Strand of Watkins.

The Stearns County Sheriff’s Office was called to a crash on Highway 23 near Stearns County Road 140 yesterday (Sunday). 18 year old Dylan Van Ort of Cold Spring was traveling west on Highway 23 and attempted to avoid an animal in the roadway. He was struck by a vehicle driven by 28 year old Allison Wolf of Cold Spring, who was also traveling west. Wolf was taken to the St. Cloud Hospital with minor injuries.

Willmar’s historic Lakeland hotel building has been purchased by businessman Tom Amberg. He has a number of plans for the building, one of which is to maybe put in a sports bar themed restaurant on the lower level. He also has plans to combine several smaller apartments into larger ones. Last year the hotel was named to the National Register of Historic Places.

Chippewa County District Judge Thomas Van Hon has denied a motion by the defense to dismiss charges of criminal vehicular homicide or operation against 70 year old Arnold Jaenisch of rural Clara City. Jaenisch is charged with three felony counts of vehicular homicide in the death of 39 year old Kelly Berghorst of Montevideo. The fatal crash happened Dec. 16, 2011 at the intersection of Chippewa County Road 13 and Highway 29 in Chippewa County.

21 year old Tamara Mendoza of Willmar pled guilty last week to third degree assault for stabbing a teen last August, and also pled guilty to a fifth degree drug sale count.  She appeared in Kandiyohi County District Court before Judge Donald Spilseth. She will be sentenced February 14th.

23 year old Latoya Rodgers of Minneapolis appeared in Kandiyohi County District Court Friday where she pled guilty to a felony charge of theft. Rodgers, who is one of four women that were charged in the theft of cell phones from Wal-mart, will be sentenced March 18th.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) state forest nurseries are gearing up for their spring seedling sale. Millions of seedlings are available for the 2013 planting season, including 20 species of native bareroot trees and shrubs grown from seeds collected in Minnesota. Seedlings vary in size from 6 to 18 inches in height. Pines, spruces, oaks, maples, wildlife shrubs and much more are available with prices starting as low as 24 cents per piece. The state forest nurseries are taking orders now for April and May pickup or delivery. A minimum of 500 seedlings must be ordered, which will cover approximately one acre of ground. Seedlings can be used for reforestation, improving wildlife habitat, creating shelterbelts, developing green buffers to protect water quality and cleaning the air by removing carbon dioxide.

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