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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Grand Forks City Council members have the choice of turning downtown Arbor Park over to the Park District or putting the question to voters after City Attorney Howard Swanson determined the proposal laid out by activists seeking to stop development of the park was legal.
An elderly man died in a fire in his home in rural Nelson County last week. Firefighters with McVille Fire and Ambulance responded to a report of a fire at a farmstead on rural 22nd Street Northeast, about 6 miles southeast of McVille, at 11:45 p.m. Dec. 16, according to Nelson County Sheriff Keith Olson. The house was occupied by Theodore Roisland, 86. Investigators found Roisland's body about 10:40 Saturday morning. Olson said Roisland lived alone and did not have close relatives in the area. He was last seen about 5 p.m. Friday.
CROOKSTON—A 34-year-old woman who had been living in a makeshift shelter near Crookston before her death Friday was "a ray of sunshine ... just vibrant and really alive," her companion said Wednesday. But she could not overcome years of alcoholism and mental illness. Lee Tibbets, 57, called 911 when Erin Leigh Koplitz was unresponsive after taking pills that morning in the shelter they shared in a wooded area along the Red Lake River west of town. "She just went so far under, she didn't wake up," Tibbets said, sitting in a motel room acquaintances had paid for.
The Original Harlem Globetrotters are scheduled to perform on April 22 at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m., Thursday (Nov.17) at the Alerus Center box office in Grand Forks and at www.ticketmaster.com , or by calling (800) 745-3000. Tickets range from $20 to $75, plus fees.
Grand Forks police were looking for a man who fled after crashing a minivan into a utility pole Tuesday morning on Reeves Drive. According to police, the suspect left a damaged Mercury Villager around 7:30 a.m. at Reeves and Reeves Court and ran toward the Red River. Officers later found a man matching the driver's description in the area, but he evaded them by swimming across the river into East Grand Forks. East Grand Forks police assisted Grand Forks officers in searching across the river but did not find the suspect.
It is no stretch to call it a soggy September. Compared to normal weather for the month, September 2016 was unusually wet. "It's very fair to say that," said National Weather Service meteorologist Jennifer Ritterling. The past month was the sixth-wettest on record as recorded at the weather service's Grand Forks office west of the UND campus. The month saw 4.97 inches of precipitation. "That's almost 3 inches above normal," Ritterling said.
Devils Lake state Rep. Curt Hofstad has died, according to the North Dakota Governor's Office. Hofstad, a Republican, had served in the House since 2007. His biography on the Legislature's website said he was a farmer and had been involved in the Devils Lake area as a member of the Starkweather School Board, the Devils Lake Airport Authority and the State Water Commission. Hofstad was vice chairman of the House Human Services Committee and was a member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
LAKOTA, N.D.—The owners of a campground and their customers are rebuilding after Thursday's violent storm left dozens of campers and trailers strewn around their property south of Lakota. "Several campers were lost, totaled," said Bobbi Schroeder, who owns Northern Lakeview Campground with her husband, James. "Many were toppled and twisted and thrown."
Grand Forks Police are searching for a suspect in a north side convenience store robbery this afternoon. Sgt. Kevin Kallinen said a man held up the M&H gas station and store 423 N. Fifth St. at 3:46 p.m. The suspect did not display a weapon, and Kallinen said he did not have information on what the man took. Police officers have been searching the Near North Neighborhood near downtown for the suspect, whom Kallinen described as a white male. This is a developing story and will be updated later.
Several Grand Forks area law enforcement agencies will be represented at officer Jason Moszer's funeral Monday in Fargo. "We've moved around some manpower to accommodate anyone who wants to go," said Lt. Gary Grove with the Grand Forks County Sheriff's Department. Fifteen of about 35 members of that agency will be making the trip.