Christopher Bjorke is the content editor for the Grand Forks Herald. He first worked for the Herald in 1997 and most recently since 2011. His jobs at the Herald have included covering local government, state politics, business and economics, and the health care industry.
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THOMPSON, N.D.—The mayor of Thompson will leave office Oct. 31, she told city officials in an email Thursday, citing a personal need to slow down. "Life it too short to sweat the small stuff, and therefore I choose to stop stressing," Mayor Karyn Hippen wrote to City Council members and city staff. Hippen told the Herald that after being in public office for 18 years, she wanted a break from the responsibilities. "The stress and the work involved have taken their toll," Hippen said. "It's mostly personal reasons that have prompted me to reduce stress in my life."
OKLEE, Minn.—A 41-year-old Minnesota man was arrested Friday afternoon in connection to a cache of pipe bombs found on a rural property last weekend. Officers with the Red Lake and Pennington County sheriff's offices and the regional drug task force arrested Eric James Reinbold at his residence north of Oklee, and he was taken to the Pennington County jail, according to a news release from Red Lake County. He faces charges of felony possession of explosives and violation of a probation agreement, the statement from the Sheriff's Office said.
FERTILE, Minn.—A Polk County man has been charged with second-degree attempted murder for shooting an airplane flying over his property last week, according to court documents. Chad Lynndell Olson, 51, was charged Thursday in Polk County District for allegedly shooting a Cessna small aircraft with a high-powered rifle from his property on Highway 32 northeast of the Fertile airfield on Oct. 6. Olson has a history of making threats and shooting at planes flying over his home, according to a criminal complaint against him.
A Red Pepper manager chased off an early-morning intruder who broke into the restaurant near downtown Grand Forks on Saturday. Bill Moon, who lives above the taco shop at 1011 University Ave., said he heard noises in the restaurant about 6 a.m. When he went downstairs to investigate, he found a man inside the business. When Moon confronted him, the man fled. "I kind of just heard some banging around downstairs," Moon said. "It kind of seemed like he was intoxicated."
A little boy from Grand Forks will be in a big spotlight in New York City this weekend. Eighteen-month-old Cutler James Thompson will be part of a display in Times Square on Saturday in a video for the New York Buddy Walk, an event promoting awareness and acceptance of people with Down syndrome. "I just sent (Cutler's photo) in thinking, 'Oh gosh, it's a long shot,'" said Cutler's mother, Amy Sanders, who submitted her son's picture to the National Down Syndrome Society to help promote this weekend's walk.
An apartment building was evacuated Monday evening in Grand Forks because of a grease fire. Fire crews responded around 5:55 p.m. to 830 Fourth Ave. S. for a report of a fire. An unoccupied main floor unit was filled with smoke caused by burning grease, according to Fire Battalion Chief Rob Corbett. The unit sustained smoke damage but no fire damage, he said.
Updated, 9 p.m.: Grand Forks Police arrested a man in connection to a homicide in Des Moines, Iowa, north of the city Monday night. Officers arrested Randy Dean Miles, 41, of Des Moines, on a warrant and without incident at the 3000 block of North Washington Street, according to Police Sgt. Andy Stein.
Grand Forks Police investigators were assisting their counterparts in Fargo in a missing person case Wednesday, canvassing a northside neighborhood for information. Police Lt. Brett Johnson, head of investigations in Grand Forks, said his department was visiting homes around 1800 block of Second Avenue North for information related to the disappearance of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind of Fargo. "We received a request from them to help them on that case and to do a neighborhood canvass," Johnson said.
The three-day reign of Grand Forks native Gavin Borchert as a "Jeopardy!" champion came to an end in an episode that aired Monday. Borchert racked up the correct answers in the latest episode of the long-running quiz show and went into the final round in second place with $18,200. He correctly answered that a jellyfish is the most venomous marine creature, adding $17,500 to his total. But it wasn't enough to hold off newcomer Deborah Elliott, a Cleveland educator who also gave the right answer and edged out Borchert by $1,100.
Grand Forks native Gavin Borchert is on the road to another appearance on "Jeopardy!" next week after correctly answering a Final Jeopardy question about writer Cormac McCarthy. Borchert's third win this week earned him $20,800 and a return appearance as defending champion on the long-running TV quiz show Monday at 5 p.m. on CBS. The latest episode aired Friday.