Suspected thief parks stolen car at retired officers’ home
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Minneapolis man is in trouble with the law after he allegedly stole a car and tried to hide it at the home of two retired police officers. The St. Paul Pioneer Press reported Friday that Alexander John Thompson was charged Jan. 31 with auto theft in Dakota County. According to police, Thompson stole a car in Lakeville the morning of Jan. 30. He parked the car in a pole barn at a Greenvale Township home later that afternoon. The home is owned by a retired Prior Lake police officer and her husband, a retired New Mexico police officer. The couple saw Thompson and handcuffed him.
St. Cloud airport to implement paid parking system in march
ST. CLOUD, Minn. (AP) — No more free parking at St. Cloud’s airport. The St. Cloud Times reports that after decades of not charging for parking, the St. Cloud Regional Airport will launch a paid parking system on March 1. On-site parking in paved and gravel overflow lots will cost $5 per day. The fees mark one of the most visible changes since control of the airport shifted from the city to a regional authority in December. The move means some operating expenses that had been covered by property taxes will now be covered by user fees. The first two hours of short-term parking will remain free. The airport is the sixth-largest in Minnesota.
DAUNTE WRIGHT-OFFICER TRIAL
Wright family, activists see injustice in Potter’s sentence
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The issue of race was barely brought up during the trial of Kim Potter. But Daunte Wright’s family members and activists say the case has always been about race and that this was evident when Potter was sentenced to two years in prison. Potter had faced a presumptive sentence of just over seven years for first-degree manslaughter. The former Brooklyn Center officer has said she mistook her handgun for her Taser when she shot Wright. But some say her two-year sentence was too lenient, and that it shows the justice system treats Black and white people differently.
Police hunt for man after discovering cache of stolen goods
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Police in St. Paul are hunting for a man after discovering a cache of stolen vehicles, drugs and ammunition at his residence. The Pioneer Press reported Friday that sheriff’s deputies searched 42-year-old Timothy Lee Donavan Olson’s residence in January after learning a stolen trailer might be at the address. They discovered four stolen motorcycles, a stolen snowmobile, a stolen truck, two stolen trailers, four guns and ammunition, methamphetamine, marijuana and fentanyl. Olson tried to flee but was captured. He was released pending an investigation but was charged Thursday with 20 counts. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.
University of Minnesota student eliminated from ‘Jeopardy!”
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A University of Minnesota student has been eliminated from a ‘Jeopardy!” college tournament. The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that sophomore Emmey Harris was eliminated from the tournament in a semi-final round that aired Friday in prime time. She came in third, losing by only $400. The finals will feature students from the University of Texas, Northeastern College and Kennesaw State University. That match-up will air Tuesday evening. Students from the University of Minnesota also reached the semi-finals in 1994, 1995 and 2010. Minnesota student Nabir Sarma won the title in 2020, the last time the college championship was held.
DAUNTE WRIGHT-OFFICER TRIAL-JUDGE
Family: Judge in Potter case swayed by ‘white woman tears’
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The judge who sentenced white former Officer Kim Potter to two years in prison for killing Black motorist Daunte Wright cited the difficult job that police face — and Potter’s remorse — as justification for giving her a light sentence. Hennepin County District Judge Regina Chu choked up often as she said it was difficult to decide on a sentence. Potter said she meant to use her Taser but mistakenly fired her handgun into Wright’s chest during a traffic stop. Wright’s family and attorneys angrily condemned Chu, who is Asian American, for cutting Potter a break, saying a Black former officer convicted of shooting a white woman in a different Minnesota case got no such mercy despite his own expressions of remorse.
Daunte Wright’s mother angered by Potter’s smiling mug shot
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A prison intake photo of Kim Potter that showed her smiling widely after she was convicted of manslaughter in Daunte Wright’s death flared up at her sentencing. Wright’s mother Katie told the court that it was one of several things that made her doubt that Potter was genuinely sorry for his death. Defense attorney Paul Engh said no disrespect was intended and Potter was simply doing as instructed by the prison staff. Potter, who is white, had said that she mixed up her gun and her Taser when she shot the young Black man last April in suburban Minneapolis. Judge Regina Chu on Friday sentenced Potter to two years, well below prosecutors’ request, saying that mitigating factors warranted it.
Council clears way for solar array at refinery
ROSEMOUNT, Minn. (AP) — The Rosemount City Council has approved a permit allowing a massive solar panel plant at the Pine Bind refinery. The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported Friday the council approved the necessary permit for Flint Hills Resources to build a 314-acre tract of solar panels at the refinery that sits along U.S. Highway 52. Flint Hills owns the refinery as well as the property where the solar project would be located. The company will decide whether to move ahead with the 45-megawatt project in the coming weeks. Company officials say the solar array could provide 40% of the power to run the refinery when the sun is shining.
The Associated Press