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Minnesota attorney general sues CenturyLink

Plus: police union says Minneapolis cop who shot dog acted properly; Holiday deal could create first truly national convenience store chain; women videotaped by former custodian at public safety building in Duluth get $1.2 million; and more.

Attorney General Lori Swanson
Attorney General Lori Swanson

First, sue someone to explain the average bill. Erin Golden’s Strib story on Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson’s latest legal action says, “Swanson sued CenturyLink on Wednesday as she alleged that the internet, phone and cable television provider frequently billed Minnesota customers at higher rates than its sales agents quoted. … Swanson said she’s asking a judge to impose civil penalties, order the company to change its sales practices and require that CenturyLink pay restitution to customers who were mislead about their purchases.” Trump or any cable company: which has a higher approval rating?

Who among us wouldn’t want a little leeway? At MPR, Brian Bakst says, “Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is waiver hunting this week out east. The DFL governor wrapped up a few days in Washington on Wednesday and heads next to Rhode Island, where the National Governors Association holds its summer meeting this weekend. In both settings, Dayton is pressing top federal officials for leeway — on health care and driver’s licenses. … The state’s application for flexibility was judged to be complete in late June and a required public comment period will push the matter into August. Dayton says he hopes a waiver decision will come through by the end of August.”

The latest on the dogs: Stribber Paul Walsh writes, “The officer who shot and seriously wounded two dogs over the weekend in a north Minneapolis residential backyard responded properly and in line with his training, the police union said Wednesday. In a lengthy statement, Sherral Schmidt, vice president of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, noted that the first dog that officer Michael Mays encountered growled and slowly advanced on him before he ‘made the difficult decision to fire his service weapon upon the pit bulls to prevent injury to himself.’” And if a cat purred at him in a particularly aggressive manner? 

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Peter Passi from Forum News Service says: “Six women who worked for local law enforcement likely stand to receive $1.2 million as part of a mediated settlement involving St. Louis County and the city of Duluth. The settlement arises from the actions of Jeffrey Dominick Giacomini, a former custodian at the Public Safety Building shared by city and county law enforcement. Giacomini, a county employee, pleaded guilty in April to five gross misdemeanor counts of invasion of privacy and two gross misdemeanor charges of stalking, related to women he surreptitiously video-recorded and photographed at work and in a locker room at the law enforcement center between 2014 and 2016.”

More on the Holiday deal. Jeff Meitrodt of the Strib reports, “The acquisition of Holiday Cos. will help the company that also owns Circle K to stake a claim as America’s first truly national convenience store chain. … The deal, which must still be approved by Holiday shareholders and federal regulators, would allow Circle K to expand into six new states. There would be Couche-Tard-owned stores in all but two states, well ahead of leading rival 7-Eleven, according to the National Association of Convenience Stores.” Will the Slim Jims still be fresh?

A wild, fatal ride. The AP story says, “La Crosse police say a man who crashed a car into creek following a weekend chase has died of his injuries. Authorities say 19-year-old DeShawn Huff, of Winona, Minnesota, was driving a stolen vehicle last Sunday when police tried to stop him. He sped away with police in pursuit. Police video shows Huff veering off a street and into Swift Creek. Officers went into the water and threw ropes to Huff but he was unable to grab them or stay afloat.”

Today in Second Amendment news. In the PiPress, Mara Gottfried reports, “As a man held his 1-year-old daughter on the front porch of their St. Paul home Tuesday night and his 10-year-old son made Kool-Aid inside, a barrage of gunshots rang out on the street. At least one bullet went through the kitchen window, near the boy. ‘I would have lost it if one of my kids would have got hit,’ said George Jackson. ‘I’m standing right here and I’m hearing the bullets, ‘zoom, zoom’ past me.’ No one was injured in the North End neighborhood, but the incident illustrates the perils associated with the increase in gun violence in St. Paul this year. Reports of shots-fired rose nearly 62 percent in St. Paul during the first six months of the year, compared with the same period last year.”