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Protest shuts down southbound I-35W during morning commute

Plus: Philando Castile’s sister recounts his final hours; Q&A with Falcon Heights mayor; Twin Cities’ utopian image fades; Franken has questions about Pokémon Go; and more.

Protestors blocked the southbound lane of I-35W in Minneapolis Wednesday morning to protest of the killing of Philando Castile.
REUTERS/Eric Miller

Well, that’ll get people’s attention. The Star Tribune’s Tim Harlow and Paul Walsh report: “A few dozen protesters blocked all southbound lanes of Interstate 35W at University Avenue in Minneapolis at the peak of the morning commute Wednesday, the latest public disruption in the wake of last week’s police killing of Philando Castile in Falcon Heights. … There were 41 arrests made starting about 45 minutes into the demonstration just north of downtown, and the interstate was reopened after 90 or so minutes.”

Philando Castile’s last hours. The New York Times’ Mitch Smith writes: “Philando Castile had just finished getting his hair styled last Wednesday when he called his sister, Allysza, and offered to deliver dinner to the suburban house she shares with their mother. … Over a meal of Taco Bell takeout, the two siblings alternated between laughter and serious discussions, including about the fatal shooting of Alton Sterling by the police in Louisiana. … ‘We talked about all this stuff: “Did you see that video on Facebook of the man getting killed?”’ Ms. Castile recalled in an interview Tuesday. ‘I said, “No, I didn’t watch it, bro. I refuse to watch another video.”’ ”

The Pioneer Press’ Nick Woltman has a Q&A with the mayor of Falcon Heights, Peter Lindstrom: “Falcon Heights Mayor Peter Lindstrom spent much of the past week speaking with residents and confronting issues related to the shooting. … ‘This incident has really torn at the fabric of our community,’ Lindstrom said. ‘We have a lot of very difficult questions to ask in the days and weeks ahead, and we are committed to asking those questions to make sure justice is served.’”

The magazine that once lauded “The Miracle of Minneapolis” realized there’s another, darker side to that. The Atlantic’s Alana Semuels writes: “At first it may have seemed surprising that one of the police shootings last week occurred in a suburb of St. Paul. The Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul have long been lauded for their inclusiveness and egalitarianism. They’re seen as an affordable utopia where forward-thinking social policies have led to greater equality. … This sets the region apart from the highly segregated communities where the most high-profile police shootings have happened, cities like St. Louis, Chicago, and New York. But perhaps that reputation is in need of an update: While the Twin Cities were once one of the most integrated places in the country, Minneapolis and St. Paul are much more segregated than they were in the 1970s and 1980s, according to Myron Orfield, the director of the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity at the University of Minnesota.”

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Sen. Franken has questions about Pokémon Go, too. REUTERS’ Dustin Volz reports: “A Democratic U.S. senator on Tuesday asked the software developer behind Nintendo Co Ltd’s Pokemon GO to clarify the mobile game’s data privacy protections, amid concerns the augmented reality hit was unnecessarily collecting vast swaths of sensitive user data. … Senator Al Franken of Minnesota sent a letter to Niantic Chief Executive John Hanke asking what user data Pokemon GO collects, how the data is used and with what third party service providers that data may be shared.”

In other news…

Interesting local angle on new British PM: “New UK prime minister studied politics in Rochester” [Rochester Post Bulletin]

Not the direction you want this trend to go: “MN adds more than 300 lakes, streams to polluted water list” [MPR]

A reporter remembers Jeff Sandell: “Police Clips: A good friend on a long night” [Pioneer Press]

Climate change getting out of hand: “Baby alligator found on bike path near Brainerd” [Inforum]

No good getting a job if you can’t get to it: “U study finds unemployed far from jobs” [Minnesota Daily]