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ALEXANDRIA, Minn. - One of the two suspects charged in the manslaughter death of a man following an incident outside a bar May 5 has pleaded not guilty. Troy Traut, 33, who appeared in Douglas County District Court Jan. 10, also pleaded not guilty to two fifth-degree misdemeanor assault charges. Steven “Beaver” Hlinsky, 46, a long-time Forada firefighter, died on May 13, 2018. Authorities believe his death was the result of injuries he suffered after being assaulted in the early-morning hours of May 5 outside a bar in Forada.
DULUTH — A Duluth man now faces two potential murder counts after the 70-year-old victim of a Park Point home invasion assault died over the weekend. St. Louis County prosecutor Rebekka Stumme filed a motion to amend the criminal complaint Monday, Jan 14, against 30-year-old Darrel Darryl Mayhew. The amended complaint, which still must be reviewed by a judge, adds two counts of second-degree murder in the death of Larry Watczak to existing robbery and burglary charges.
GORDON, Wis. — A 13-year-old Wisconsin girl who had been missing since October has been found alive in rural Douglas County, Wisconsin, on Thursday, Jan. 10, authorities said.
ST. PAUL - More than 300 law enforcement agencies across Minnesota combined to make 2,757 arrests for drunken driving during a holiday enforcement campaign, an increase of nearly 4 percent from 2,656 a year ago. During the Nov. 21-Dec. 29 campaign, 15 drivers were reported to have a blood-alcohol content level of .30 or higher, the highest being .424 reported by University of Minnesota (Twin Cities) police, the Department of Public Safety said. Among the arrests:
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. — The victim’s told Joshua Holby she doesn’t blame his family or harbor any ill feelings toward them. However, she told him, as well as everyone in the courtroom, that she does feel hatred toward him and that she will never forgive him for what he did to her daughter. Holby, 32, was sentenced in Douglas County District Court by Judge Timothy Churchwell to 86 months in prison after pleading guilty in September to two counts of kidnapping, a felony-level offense. Under the guidelines and because he has no prior criminal record, Holby received the 86-month sentence.
ROSEAU, Minn. — A Roseau man will spend two more months behind bars for sexually assaulting a young child. Anthony Joseph Ray Garcia, 23, pleaded guilty to second-degree criminal sexual conduct as part of a plea agreement that dropped a first-degree charge for sexual contact with a person under age 13. He has been in custody for four months and will have spent six months in jail in total. Garcia will also spend 10 years on supervised probation.
ST. PAUL — A Red Lake man plead guilty to murder on Monday, Dec. 17, in federal court. U.S. Attorney Erica MacDonald announced the guilty plea of Michael Wayne Whitefeather, 18, to murder in the second degree, in the shooting death of Anthony Allen Wells, 22. According to the defendant’s guilty plea, during the early morning hours of April 28, he was traveling in a car on the Red Lake Indian Reservation about 35 miles north of Bemidji and saw Anthony Allen Wells, 22, and another male walking in a parking lot near the Red Lake Skate Park.
CROOKSTON, Minn. — A Crookston man was accused of breaking into a woman’s home twice last month, allegedly strangling the woman one time and physically assaulting a child the second time, according to charging documents. Ira Edward Bailey, 29, appeared Monday, Dec. 17, in Polk County District Court on seven charges including three first-degree counts of burglary and two counts of felony domestic assault. The burglary charges each carry a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison.
WALKER, Minn. — A Cass County man has been charged with second-degree murder after allegedly stabbing his mother multiple times at her home in Bena. In addition to the homicide charge, Thomas Wayne Matthews, 34, is facing three counts of second-degree assault and one count of fifth-degree assault after an incident at a Bena business in late November. Bena is located 35 miles east of Bemidji on the Leech Lake Reservation.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson on Tuesday, Dec. 11 brought a lawsuit against a Virginia-based tax settlement company, alleging the group broke state consumer protection laws. The company, Wall and Associates, Inc., didn't register in the state and collected from customers before fully delivering services, the lawsuit alleges. Minnesota law requires tax debt settlement groups to file with the state and to fully deliver services before collecting payment.