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AROUND MINNESOTA: Ammo prompts lockdown ... Man jailed for robbery ... Child porn restitution? more

Ammo discovery prompts lockdown BLAINE -- Police said a search of Blaine High School that followed the discovery of ammunition in a garbage can found no weapon. The northern Twin Cities school of 2,500 students was locked down as classes began Th...

Ammo discovery prompts lockdown

BLAINE -- Police said a search of Blaine High School that followed the discovery of ammunition in a garbage can found no weapon.

The northern Twin Cities school of 2,500 students was locked down as classes began Thursday morning so police could investigate.

Anoka-Hennepin School District spokeswoman Mary Olson said a custodian apparently discovered the ammunition Wednesday night.

By the time the principal was notified Thursday morning and had called police, Olson said it was too late to cancel classes.

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Olson said no threats were made. She said a male student was identified, but officials don't believe he intended to use the ammunition at the school.

Classes were dismissed early at 12:30 p.m. School is scheduled to resume as normal today.

Man sentenced for bungled robbery

MINNEAPOLIS -- A St. Paul man has been sentenced to just over three years in prison for a bungled bank robbery.

Authorities said that when Donteh Lamont Smith handed a teller at a St. Paul TCF Bank branch a note demanding cash in July, it was wrapped around his ID card from Century College in suburban White Bear Lake.

The teller gave Smith just over $4,000, along with an exploding dye pack.

St. Paul police arrested him nearby.

His hands, clothing and some of the money stuffed in his pockets were stained by the dye.

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According to an FBI agent's affidavit, Smith confessed, saying he was having trouble providing for his wife and kids.

Smith pleaded guilty in September, and U.S. District Judge James Rosenbaum sentenced him this week to 37 months in prison.

Restitution for child porn victim?

ST. PAUL -- A federal judge in St. Paul has asked prosecutors to explain why they didn't request restitution for a victim of child pornography.

U.S. District Court Judge Patrick Schiltz said Congress has made it clear that restitution for child porn victims must be considered.

Schlitz has ordered the U.S. attorney prosecuting a child porn possession case against Brandon Anthony Buchanan to submit their reasons for failing to ask for restitution to the court by Jan. 29.

The Star Tribune reported University of Utah law professor Paul Cassell said the issue of restitution for child porn victims whose explicit photos are circulating on the Internet is one "that's percolating around the country."

Restraint argued for disabled man

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MINNEAPOLIS -- A Brooklyn Park mother wants answers after her mentally disabled son ended up in a coma after being restrained.

Nancy Aleshire said her son, Tim Aleshire, 27, lashed out at a co-worker at Metro Resources on Dec. 31. During the struggle to restrain him, he stopped breathing. She said he ended up on life support with irreversible brain damage.

Doctors don't know if the effort to restrain him caused him to stop breathing or if he had another medical problem.

Nancy Aleshire said she thinks the action was excessive. She said her son had Asperger's syndrome and schizophrenia but was high-functioning.

Metro Resources, run by the Department of Human Services, gives people with special needs an opportunity to work. Department spokeswoman Patrice Vick said the staff is devastated and cooperating with police.

Principal allows BBs shot in school

EAGAN -- The Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan School District will not discipline an elementary school principal who allowed a parent to shoot a BB gun in the school gym.

Red Pine Elementary School Principal Gary Anger gave a parent permission to shoot down helium balloons on the ceiling of the gym after a recent DARE graduation ceremony.

District spokesman Tony Taschner told the St. Paul Pioneer Press that administrators investigated the incident and decided against punishing Anger.

Anger said after the incident that he regretted giving the parent permission. The district has a policy that bans weapons on school property.

Man with rifle threatens plower

CLOQUET -- A Cloquet man is in custody and facing possible charges of second-degree assault and disorderly conduct after allegedly using a rifle to threaten a man who was plowing snow.

The plow driver reported to police this week a man in a house next to a parking lot he was plowing turned on a light, stood in a window and made an obscene gesture at him "in a hostile manner."

The plow driver then alleged the resident disappeared briefly and subsequently reappeared in the window with a rifle in his hands before turning out the lights once again.

Officers advised the plow driver to leave the immediate area and later arrested a man at the house and confiscated a Remington 7400 Model 30.06 rifle from the residence.

Hecker must repay $125,000

MINNEAPOLIS -- Former auto dealer Denny Hecker has been sentenced to 90 days in jail unless he quickly repays the retirement account he drained without his ex-wife's permission.

The Star Tribune reports Hennepin County District Judge Jay Quam issued the order Thursday.

Hecker has 30 days to repay the more than $125,000 from the 401(k) account he liquidated because, he said, he had large expenses from the 11 lawsuits he's fighting.

Quam ordered Hecker back in court Feb. 19 to review whether he reimbursed the money.

Quam also ordered Hecker and his ex-wife, Tamitha, to stop making disparaging remarks about one another. Quam noted the effects on the couple's young children.

Star Tribune's new publisher/CEO

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Star Tribune has named a former executive with Time Inc. as the Minneapolis newspaper's publisher and CEO.

Michael J. Klingensmith, 57, spent more than 30 years with Time Inc. While there he also was president of Sports Illustrated, founding publisher of Entertainment Weekly and general manager of Time magazine.

In announcing the appointment Thursday, Star Tribune board chairman Mike Sweeney called Klingensmith "one of the top publishing executives in the country."

Klingensmith grew up in Fridley, a Minneapolis suburb. He said he "can't think of a more fascinating, challenging and interesting opportunity" than returning to his hometown and leading the Star Tribune.

Legislators seek bounty on coyotes

GRANITE FALLS -- Local legislators here pledged to once again introduce bills this upcoming legislative session that would allow counties to place bounties on coyotes.

Sen. Gary Kubly, DFL-Granite Falls, told Yellow Medicine County officials this week that he believes the bill could make it out of committee this session.

Rep. Lyle Koenen, DFL-Clara City, who also introduced similar legislation previously, was not sure how the bill would fare in the House.

The legislators said they've heard requests for the bounty legislation from Chippewa and, Lac qui Parle counties as well.

Yellow Medicine County Commissioner Gary Johnson asked the legislators to re-introduce the bills. He has expressed concerns about what he believes is a growing coyote population in the county. He voiced his fears about the potential for encounters between coyotes and young people in rural areas.

The legislators said the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has opposed the bounty legislation as an ineffective approach toward predator control.

Related Topics: POLICY
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