Statewide: February 13, 2012 Archive
At least one county attorney is concerned that a mass bust of alleged gang members will amount to a short lived victory.
In a statewide bust last month, federal authorities charged 24 people said to belong to a gang called the "Native Mob." Charges included attempted murder, drug trafficking and racketeering.
Arrests were made in the Twin Cities as well as on the Leech Lake, White Earth and the Mille Lacs Indian reservations.
"The indictment that was unsealed ... I think is a pretty important indicator as to the efforts we are taking in Minnesota at all levels to enhance public safety," U.S. Attorney B. Todd Jones said at the time of the arrests.
But Mille Lacs County Attorney Jan Jude, whose office assisted in the investigation, has doubts about how big a dent law enforcement put in the gang problem.
"Certainly a big bust like that should have an impact," she said. "I don't have a lot of faith that it's going to have a long-term impact. I think that there are people that are going to fill those shoes very quickly."
Jude said serious felonies have quadrupled since 2007 on the tribal land in Mille Lacs County, resulting in hundreds of cases. She said most of the repeat offenders her office prosecutes also come from the reservation.
Posted at 7:30 AM on February 13, 2012
by Michael Olson
Filed under: Around MN
Grammys 2012: Bon Iver thanks the 'talent that's not here'
LA Times: "The easygoing folk pop band Bon Iver was named best new artist, and the act's mastermind, Justin Vernon, used his time on the Grammy podium to thank 'all the non-nominees who never will be here.' While the likes of Kanye West have endorsed Bon Iver, the Midwestern act was competing against bigger names such as rapper Nicki Minaj and electronic sensation Skrillex. Like Arcade Fire's album of the year win last year, Bon Iver's nomination and win is a victory for the independent community."
Duluth News Tribune: "Michael Baker, a 1975 Duluth Central High School graduate who went on to become a drummer to some of pop's biggest stars and Whitney Houston's music director for two decades until her death Saturday, doesn't talk much about the adversity in her life. In an interview last May, he said simply that he'd 'seen it all' during every stage in her career. On Sunday, he again accentuated the positive and concentrated on the joy that Houston brought to millions, calling her a sweet person who brought beauty to the world. 'She was really, really a wonderful person,' Baker, who has a home in Woodbury, Minn., told the News Tribune in a phone interview from Los Angeles, where he arrived Sunday afternoon. 'I would just say that she was someone who brought something incredibly special to the world.'"
Dayton vetoes civil lawsuit bills, blasts GOP leadership
MPR News: DFL Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed the first bills sent to him this session on Thursday, and he used the occasion to blast Republican legislative leaders.
Legislators respond to property tax complaints
St Cloud Times: "Property owners are peeved about rising tax bills this year, rural lawmakers and a prominent business leader in Central Minnesota say. The blowback has at least two local legislators, Rep. Sondra Erickson, R-Princeton, and Sen. Dave Brown, R-Becker, rethinking the votes they cast last year."
More legislative news from MN Today
Schlienz admitted shooting, blamed it on courts
Duluth News Tribune: "In one of the first calls he made at the St. Louis County Jail, 42-year-old Daniel Schlienz explained to a friend in his hometown of Grand Marais why he shot Cook County Attorney Tim Scannell and Grand Marais resident Gregory Thompson on Dec. 15, blaming it on frustration with the court system."
January tax collections below forecast
Capitol View: "Minnesota Management and Budget says general fund revenues were $107 million below forecast in January. The agency says revenues are $45.5 million less than forecast for the fiscal year that runs from July 1 to June 30. The latest revenue forecast details the state's tax collections for the past month."
Proposed amendments to Minnesota's constitution carry GOP dreams
Forum Communications: "Minnesota Republicans look to the state Constitution as a way to enact some of their pet policy dreams. In some cases, the constitutional amendments are ways to get around Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton, who would not approve of their policy choices."
Warm winter extends ferry season between Bayfield and Madeline Island
Duluth News Tribune: "If a resident of Madeline Island wants to catch tonight's 7:30 showing of "Star Wars: Episode I" in 3-D at the theater in Ashland, they'll have to plan on a 15-hour commitment."
Rick Santorum's plan to derail Mitt Romney
Politico: "Rick Santorum's campaign is eyeing a pair of swiftly approaching Midwestern primary states as its best -- and perhaps only -- opportunity to deal a mortal blow to Mitt Romney and permanently transform the Republican presidential race into a one-on-one duel to the finish."
O Canada: Ron Paul excels in northern border states
Smart Politics: "The vote for Paul is nearly double in states bordering Canada compared to the rest of the nation for both caucuses and primaries during the 2008 and 2012 election cycles."
More from the campaign trail from MN Today