WORTHINGTON -- Dr. Leslie McLemore, civil rights speaker, professor at Jackson State University and President of the Jackson, Miss., City Council, was at the Minnesota West Community and Technical College Worthington campus on Tuesday speaking about Hurricane Katrina and the plight of poverty. "The color line is a great problem for this century," McLemore said, quoting W.E.B Du Bois, author of "The Souls of Black Folk." He then quoted pieces of a report by U.S. House investigators titled "A Failure of Initiative." "Our investigation revealed Katrina was a national failure," McLemore read.
WINDOM -- Former Windom Economic Development Authority (EDA) Director James Scott King now faces 107 charges of felony theft by swindle after an amended complaint was filed Monday with the Cottonwood County District Court. There were 23 counts filed on Jan. 6, one day after King was placed on administrative leave. The Windom City Council accepted King's resignation in early February.
SLAYTON -- Minnesota Viking Matt Birk recently teamed up with Slayton Police Officer Tom Whitehead to take on tougher opponents than he will ever face on the football field -- drugs and alcohol. Birk was the guest speaker at the Murray County Central/Fulda D.A.R.E. graduation Friday night at the MCC Auditorium, a fact that Whitehead, who is the Murray County D.A.R.E.
WORTHINGTON -- For the second time in a year, a Nobles County Jail employee has received an award for excellence. Officer Joe Welnetz is the recipient of the Bruce Eckley Outstanding Correction Professional of the Year. "He is a shining star who goes above and beyond his duty," said Jail Administrator Monette Soderholm. "The committee said it was a tough choice, but Joe really stood out." Nominations for the award came from all over the State of Minnesota. It was presented to Welnetz at a recent West Central Jail Administrators Association training conference.
WORTHINGTON -- All but three counties in Minnesota have state-funded services for victims of rape or physical assault. One of those three is Murray County, but that doesn't mean victims there have nowhere to turn. Murray County Sheriff Steve Telkamp said his agency has a contract with Women's Rural Advocacy Programs (WRAP) of Marshall, which has provided the sheriff's office with digital cameras and will send a representative to assist in domestic violence cases when needed.
WORTHINGTON -- The Nobles County Attorney's Office filed an appeal Wednesday with the Minnesota Court of Appeals on the sentence handed down by Judge Jeffrey Flynn in State of Minnesota versus Kenneth Shue. Shue was convicted of kidnapping and assault in November and sentenced in December to 136 months imprisonment.
WORTHINGTON -- Two Windom women have been charged with controlled substance crimes after selling methamphetamine to a confidential informant (CI) in Nobles County. According to the criminal complaint, Vickie Lynn Benson, 46, and Judy Ann Graft, 56, were arrested after a CI contacted a member of the Buffalo Ridge Drug and Gang Task Force about a controlled buy from Benson.
SLAYTON -- All school districts have substitute teachers they can call in when a teacher falls ill. Lon Hellenga didn't have to look far to find his temporary replacement. When Hellenga, a teacher at Murray County Central, started dealing with long-term health issues, his wife, Rhonda, a substitute teacher, took over his junior high and high school English and literature classes. "It worked out really well," Hellenga said. "She'd call me a couple of times a day.
WORTHINGTON -- A domestic disturbance call is made to dispatch, and authorities are sent to the scene to do their job. Sometimes an arrest is made, sometimes it isn't -- but the Southwest Crisis Center (SCC) is always called in when domestic violence is found. "We provide services for personal advocacy," said Lorraine Melendez, a domestic violence and sexual assault advocate at SCC. "We provide safe housing, transportation to shelters, assist in the ER while a sexual assault kit is prepared ...
WORTHINGTON -- Mankato West High School teacher and Democrat Tim Walz announced his candidacy for U.S. Congress Sunday afternoon at the Historic Dayton House in Worthington with his wife and daughter at his side. "I am proud to begin this journey today the way I have so many other journeys in life," he said. "Surrounded by my family, friends and those who will be my friends." Walz, a veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom and longtime educator is slated to challenge Rep.