>>Minnesota Attorney General Ellison joins lawsuit against Amazon, alleging monopoly
(St. Paul, MN) — Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison is joining the Federal Trade Commission and A-Gs from a number of other states (including neighboring Wisconsin) to sue Amazon, alleging the online retailer uses “interlocking anti-competitive and unfair strategies” to illegally maintain a monopoly. Ellison and the other plaintiffs say Amazon’s actions allow it to stifle innovation and competition, degrade quality for shoppers, overcharge sellers, and prevent rivals from fairly competing. He says Amazon punishes sellers for offering lower-priced goods elsewhere and basically forces them to use the company’s costly fulfillment service. For buyers, Ellison alleges Amazon replaces relevant search results with paid ads, and biases search results to preference its own products over others that it knows are better quality. Officials at Amazon were not immediately reachable.
>>Weather expert says recent rains put a dent in drought in eastern half of MN
D-N-R climatologist Pete Boulay (boo-LAY) says recent rainfall definitely put a dent in the drought, especially in the eastern half of Minnesota. Boulay says, “Places from Rochester to the Twin Cities, Glencoe, on up to Hinckley, Grand Rapids, Duluth — all… got at least two inches of rain — some places up to four inches of rain.” And Duluth so far this month has had 10 inches of rain. But Boulay says, “There was a swath basically from Worthington, Marshall, on through Willmar and Bemidji and on up to Roseau, International Falls [with] less than an inch of rain. So no real help there.” Boulay says the long-term forecast tends toward above-normal precipitation through mid-October.
>>Elevated radium levels in Inver Grove Heights water
(Inver Grove Heights, MN) — Inver Grove Heights is alerting residents to elevated levels of radium in its water. City officials say the latest test samples, taken June 20th, show an elevated presence of radium but levels are still within the Minnesota Department of Health’s safe drinking standards. But the city’s water system still remains “out of compliance” with MDH standards due to a 2022 sample that contained concentration above safe drinking standards. Earlier this year, the city entered into an agreement with MDH to make improvements to the city’s water treatment facility, which was last expanded in 2006. Last Fall, Inver Grove Heights announced plans to begin expansion of its plant in “early 2024” but that project was delayed last month to Fall 2024. Officials say residents do not need alternative sources of water.
>>Blue Earth County SROs to Return to Schools
(Blue Earth County, MN) — Blue Earth County Sheriff Jeff Wersal announced this morning (TUES) that on-site School Resource Officers (SROs) will return to Lake Crystal and St. Clair public schools. This comes after multiple cities and counties across Minnesota removed SROs from schools over a new law that limits use-of-force restraints on students. Attorney General Keith Ellison offered additional legal clarification last week, saying use-of-force is still allowed but must be “reasonable.”
>>Investigation continues after two children killed, two injured in crash involving Amish buggy and car
(Undated) — Authorities in southeastern Minnesota are still investigating a crash involving a car and an Amish buggy that left two children dead. The Fillmore County Sheriff’s Office says a southbound Toyota SUV struck a two-wheeled horse-drawn Amish buggy on County Road 1. Seven-year-old Wilma Miller and 11-year-old Irma Miller were killed in the crash, with their 9- and 13-year-old siblings taken to St. Marys Hospital in Rochester with unknown injuries. The driver of the S-U-V was a 35-year-old woman from Spring Valley.
>>MN-DOT, WIS-DOT unveil proposed location for Blatnik Bridge replacement in Duluth-Superior
(Duluth, MN) — MN-DOT and the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WIS-DOT) have unveiled their recommendation for the location of the proposed replacement for the aging Blatnik Bridge — a major link between Duluth and Superior — and it’s “for the most part, exactly where the bridge is today,” says Pat Huston (HEW-stun) with MN-DOT’s Duluth office. But Huston says one significant change is that bridge traffic from Duluth would go directly onto U-S Highway 53 in Superior, rather than onto a local street, Hammond Avenue — plus a new interchange would connect with Wisconsin Highway 35. Huston says the plan is to begin the major portion of the project in 2026 with construction likely to take four to five years. It’s expected traffic will be detoured to the Bong Bridge further west for a significant portion of that time.
>>Klobuchar says fellow Democrat Menendez should resign amid corruption charges
(Washington, DC) — Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar is among a growing number of Senate Democrats calling for colleague Bob Menendez to resign. Federal prosecutors allege the New Jersey Democrat and his wife accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes, in exchange for Menendez agreeing to use his official position to benefit three people as well as the Egyptian government. Klobuchar told the Star Tribune the conduct documented in the complaint is “egregious” and “goes to the core of our job as senators and it’s a violation of that trust.” Senator Tina Smith said on Monday the charges are serious “but… everyone is entitled to due process.” Menendez told reporters “when all the facts are presented, not only will I be exonerated, but I still will be New Jersey’s senior senator.”
>>St. Louis Park Man Sentenced to 4 Years in Prison for Cyberstalking
(St. Paul, MN) — A St. Louis Park man will spend almost four years in prison for cyberstalking with acts “capable of destroying the lives” of two victims. Court documents say between September 2020 and December 2021, 30-year-old Julyen Martin threatened to harass, injure and kill two people and their families through text messages and social media apps. Prosecutors say Martin also posed as the two victims and posted harmful allegations about them.
>>Fargo police ask for Public’s Help in Finding Missing Man
(Fargo, N.D.) — Fargo Police are asking for the public’s help in finding a missing man. 26-year-old Trevor Alderman was last seen September 23rd around 6 p.m. in south Fargo. Alderman is 6-4, 190 pounds, with blue eyes and brown hair, possibly wearing jeans and cowboy boots. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Red River Dispatch Center.