Minnesota

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In Minnesota's Senate, Eye Contact Is Forbidden

Members must look at Senate president, not each other

(Newser) - You know sometimes when a state has a weird rule on the books because it's been there forever and lawmakers just never got around to killing it? Yeah, that's not what's happening here. In fact, members of Minnesota's Senate reaffirmed a strange one this week—they... More »

Cops Hunt Stolen $70K in Bull Semen

Because stealing jewelry is for chumps

(Newser) - Police are investigating the theft of about $70,000 worth of bull semen from a farm in southern Minnesota. Mower County Sheriff Terese Amazi says a LeRoy man reported Tuesday that a storage canister with vials of bull semen was taken from his unlocked barn. The theft happened sometime between... More »

Alleged US Cult Leader Arrested in Brazil

Victor Arden Barnard accused of child sex abuse

(Newser) - An alleged cult leader on the US Marshals' "Most Wanted" list who reportedly had kept a group of girls as young as 12 at his disposal in Minnesota—and who has been accused by two of the girls (now adults) of sexual abuse—was arrested in Brazil on Friday,... More »

Homeland Security: Mall Threat Not Credible

Mall of America shoppers unfazed by warning

(Newser) - The Department of Homeland Security did some backtracking soon after its chief warned yesterday that Mall of America shoppers should be "particularly careful" after a terror threat. A department spokeswoman says that although the mall was named in a video released by Somali extremists al-Shabab, "we are not... More »

Minnesota Isn't Taking Any More TurboTax Returns

'Potentially fraudulent activity' has been discovered

(Newser) - Minnesota residents who had hoped to file their 2014 tax returns from the comfort of their home offices using TurboTax will need to find another alternative. The state's Department of Revenue announced in a conference call last night that it's no longer accepting returns filed using Intuit's... More »

Man Opens Fire at Police Swearing-In

Suspect shot dead at Minnesota town hall

(Newser) - Two police officers in suburban Minneapolis came under fire within moments of being sworn in last night. Police say that immediately after the ceremony at a council meeting at New Hope City Hall, a man with a "long gun" opened fire on the newly sworn-in officers and others who... More »

US Vet Tries to Overthrow Gambian President

Papa Faal faces charges for violating the Neutrality Act

(Newser) - Papa Faal, code name "Fox," is a Gambian and US citizen, married father, ITT Tech instructor, and US veteran. And last month, he allegedly tried and failed to overthrow Gambia President Yahya Jammeh, the Daily Beast reports. Yesterday, Faal, 46, faced Neutrality Act violation charges in a Minnesota... More »

Your Turkey Is Probably From Minnesota

State has way more turkeys than people

(Newser) - Minnesota has about 5.5 million people—and has produced about 45 million turkeys this year. In fact, almost one in five of the country's turkeys comes from the state, Vocativ reports. The total number of turkeys forecast to be raised in the US this year, according to the... More »

Parents Still Searching for Missing Boy 25 Years Later

Family of Jacob Wetterling, abducted at age 11 in Minn., keep focus on his case

(Newser) - Twenty-five years is a long stretch by most measures, but especially when a parent is looking for a missing child. Patty and Jerry Wetterling of Minnesota have known this interminable passing of time since their 11-year-old son, Jacob, was abducted on Oct. 22, 1989. But as the 25th anniversary of... More »

Fired Teacher May Be Pregnant With Teen's Child

Faces prison over relations with boy, 17

(Newser) - A math teacher at a Catholic high school in Minnesota is accused of having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old student, and the police complaint suggests that she might be pregnant with his child. Mary Gilles, 28, faces six counts of sexual misconduct after admitting to detectives that she began... More »

Waitress Hits Lottery, Won't Quit Job

She and husband collect $12M in Minnesota

(Newser) - Rhonda Meath waits tables for a living, and a lottery payout of $11.7 million isn't about to change that. “I actually really enjoy my job,” the 51-year-old waitress at the Lake Elmo Inn in Minnesota tells ABC News . "I have great friends here and a... More »

Female Sex Offender Struggles in All-Male Unit

Minn. state doesn't know what to do with Rhonda Bailey

(Newser) - Rhonda Bailey has done some horrific things. The 49-year-old woman raped two young boys, ages 9 and 10, in 1990 and has spoken since of her "inability to control her urges" to sexually abuse children, reports the AP in an exclusive interview. But Bailey was a victim of childhood... More »

Meet Minnesota's Newest Mayor: Duke the Dog

Cormorant's new pol will accept his salary in kibble from local pet store

(Newser) - At 7 years old, Duke isn't the youngest mayor that Minnesota has ever had—that honor goes to 5-year-old Bobby Tufts, who recently lost his second re-election bid in Dorset. But Duke might just be the state's first dog mayor. The dozen residents of the tiny and obviously... More »

Kid Mayor Out of a Job

Bobby Tufts, 5, loses bid for 3rd term in tiny Minn. town

(Newser) - A 5-year-old boy's run as mayor is over in a tiny tourist town in northern Minnesota. Robert "Bobby" Tufts lost his bid for a third consecutive term as mayor of Dorset on Sunday. Eric Mueller, a 16-year-old from Mendota Heights, Minn., won when his name was drawn from... More »

Driver 'LOLs' Over Wreck That Killed Teen

Charges pending in suspected DUI accident

(Newser) - Jason McCarthy, 16, died days after a suspected drunken driver sideswiped a vehicle, fled the scene, then crashed into the rear of McCarthy's car minutes later outside Minneapolis last week. But while the teen was fighting for his life, the alleged driver of the other vehicle, Michael Vanwagner, 24—... More »

Hauler Dumps 2 Tons of Trash on Customer's Yard

Officials cite Minnesota company in bill dispute

(Newser) - A bill dispute between a trash hauler and a customer in Minnesota has resulted in a huge mess, literally. The city of Red Wing fined local hauler Paul's Industrial Garage $1,800, plus cleanup fees, after authorities say it dumped nearly 2 tons of garbage on a customer's... More »

Man Bends Car Door in Half to Save Driver

Robert Renning saw car on fire behind him, went into action

(Newser) - A Minnesota man demonstrated superhuman strength at exactly the right time Sunday. Air National Guardsman Robert Renning, 52, was driving along the interstate around New Brighton when he saw flames underneath an SUV about six car-lengths behind him, reports Twin Cities Pioneer Press . He slowed to get driver Michael Johannes'... More »

Minn. Bans Controversial Germ-Killer

Antibacterial triclosan gets the boot from soaps

(Newser) - It's widely used nationwide as a germ-killing ingredient in soaps, deodorants, and even toothpaste, but just months after the FDA warned that triclosan may be harmful , Minnesota is now becoming the first state to ban it. The bill Gov. Mark Dayton signed Friday prohibits the use of triclosan in... More »

Why States Are Worried About Your Face Wash

Plastic 'microbeads' prompt environmental concern

(Newser) - Your face wash may be bad for the environment, and several states are trying to do something about it. The problem is "microbeads," minuscule pieces of plastic about the size of Abe Lincoln's eye on a penny, Time reports. They're found in all kinds of products... More »

Cops: Teen Plotted Massacre in 3 Stages

They think he would have gone through with it if not for a suspicious neighbor

(Newser) - The Minnesota teenager accused this week of planning a school massacre didn't just make a few offhand remarks. He laid out his plan in methodical detail in a notebook he kept locked inside his guitar case, and police are convinced that John David LaDue was poised to strike within... More »

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