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PLANKINTON, S.D. — A Plankinton man was sentenced to 87 years in the state penitentiary for sexual abuse, officials announced Wednesday. Christian Thomas, 43, was convicted on May 6 on 26 counts including fourth-degree rape, sexual contact with a child under 16, sexual exploitation of a minor, aiding or abetting fourth-degree rape, aiding or abetting sexual contact with child under 16 and possession of child pornography.
GRYGLA, Minn. -- A Grygla man was found dead Tuesday, Aug. 29, after a farming accident, according to the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office. Ralph S. Lee, 80, had been cleaning the box of a farm truck used for hauling small grain when he became trapped in the truck’s chute and died, according to a news release. Deputies received a 911 call reporting Lee’s death at about 10:11 a.m. Tuesday and responded to the scene at the 43000 block of Moose River Road in Northwood Township, in the far northwest portion of Beltrami County.
DES MOINES, Iowa -- An Iowa man who was found Monday walking on North Washington Street on the outskirts of Grand Forks has been charged in the death of his stepson in Des Moines. Randy Dean Miles Jr., 41, was charged Tuesday with first-degree murder and first-degree arson in the death of Christopher Lenhart, 26, whose burned body was found near two burning vehicles Aug. 25 in Des Moines. Lenhart died Aug. 27 in an Iowa City hospital.
ST. PAUL -- A post-summer survey shows an upward trend of Minnesota’s tourism business, the state’s tourism promotion office said. Summer revenue was up for 42 percent of survey respondents and occupancy was up 35 percent, according to Explore Minnesota on Wednesday, Aug. 30. Meanwhile, 30 percent of respondents experienced a decrease in revenue and 31 percent said occupancy was down. The hotel and motel sector reported decreased occupancy due to significant growth of new hotel rooms in the Twin Cities area, the tourism office said in its news release.
FARGO - Fargo police have received preliminary results of the autopsy on Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind . Police reported on the department’s Facebook page Tuesday morning, Aug. 29, that the preliminary cause of death was “homicidal violence.” The autopsy is being conducted by the Ramsey County Medical Examiner in St. Paul because the body was recovered in Clay County, Minn. Further details about LaFontaine-Greywind’s death, or the manner in which her baby was born, were not released.
WILLMAR, Minn. — Investigators believe the dog found dead Aug. 1 in Point Lake with a rope tethering her to an anchor had been previously euthanized after suffering a serious illness. Kandiyohi County Sheriff Dan Hartog stated in a news release on Monday, Aug. 28, that the dog's owner "placed the dog in Point Lake as a burial site because that is where the owner had taken the dog many times in the past to swim and fish.''
ST. PAUL—The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said on Friday, Aug. 25, the 2017 hunting and trapping regulations handbook and deer season map contain several errors and that hunters should take note of the corrections. In the fold-out map, correct information is as follows: • In central and northwestern Minnesota, deer permit areas (DPA) have 500 permits to harvest antlerless deer for DPA 197; 300 for DPA 262; 150 for DPA 269; 25 for DPA 270; 350 for DPA 271; 200 for DPA 272; and 100 for DPA 297.
BISMARCK—The NCAA on Thursday approved the University of Mary's Year-Round Campus initiative, allowing Mary student-athletes the option of completing their degrees much faster without jeopardizing their athletic eligibility. The decision is the first of its kind for the NCAA, the University of Mary stated in a news release on Aug. 24. Previously, a full-time summer student would have it count against their 10-semester limit.
DULUTH -- A 54-year-old Duluth man is facing his 11th DWI charge in St. Louis County. Todd Alan Murphy was charged in State District Court on Tuesday with two counts of first-degree driving while impaired and one count each of driving after cancellation, possession of an open container and no proof of insurance. The DWI, a felony, carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison and/or a $14,000 fine.
SHAKOPEE, Minn.—The Shakopee Police Department says it received a tip on the whereabouts of missing Cass Lake teen Jeremy Jourdain. On a post to its Facebook page, the department said they received a tip on Tuesday that Jourdain was "seen in the 'projects' from someone claiming to be from Shakopee." Jourdain was 17-years-old at the time of his disappearance. He was last seen the night of Oct. 31, Halloween, in the Nymore neighborhood of Bemidji.