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Man killed by St. Paul police identified

From MPR's Brandt Williams: “Family members identified the man killed by St. Paul Police Sunday as William ‘Billy’ Hughes. Dannah Thompson, who identified herself as Hughes' cousin, read a statement from the family. ‘Through our grief and difficulty, we have been left with more questions than answers as to why police officers decided to abruptly and violently take Billy's life,’ she said during a protest of the shooting near the Minneapolis American Indian Center. Thompson said Hughes was a member of the White Earth Nation of Anishinaabe. … Police said Sunday that officers shot the man who was holding a handgun at a building in the Summit-University neighborhood.”

Adds Mara Gottfried in the Pioneer Press, “When the family of William “Billy” James Hughes found out he had been fatally shot by St. Paul police officers, they said, ‘Not again,’ his aunt explained Monday. A cousin of Hughes, Philip Quinn, was killed in a confrontation with officers in St. Paul in 2015.”

In the Star Tribune, Judy Keen writes, “A spike in absentee ballot requests and anecdotal evidence that more people are registering to vote suggest higher turnout in Minnesota's Aug. 14 primary and beyond, election officials say. The number of absentee ballots requested by state voters soared to 166,603 as of last Thursday. On the same date in 2016, the total was 95,582. … [Secretary of State Steve] Simon forecast higher than normal turnout next week.”

For Finance & Commerce, William Morris reports, “A new report from the North Star Policy Institute, a progressive think tank based in St. Paul, shows that Minnesota has seen stronger growth in both total construction employment and construction wages than Wisconsin since the financial crash a decade ago. Using state and federal data, the authors say that both states lost about 32,000 construction jobs, about 25 percent of their total workforce, in the crash. By 2017, Minnesota had recovered all but 650 of the jobs lost since 2007, while Wisconsin still had about 8,800 to go, the report said.”

At MPR, Williams also reports: “The head of the Minneapolis police union says the appearance of uniformed officers in a Tim Pawlenty campaign ad photo was not improper. Lt. Bob Kroll said the federation frequently endorses candidates for office. Pawlenty, a former Republican governor, is running again for the office he left in 2011. Kroll said many of the officers in the photo with Pawlenty are members of the federation's board. ‘In any of our endorsements we will give it to them and the candidate can use it however they see fit — including photo opportunities with us, commercials, postcards, flyers — you name it,’ said Kroll.”

Also from the PiPress, Sarah Horner says, “Mark Allen Lichtenwalter thought he was talking to a 12-year-old’s father when he made arrangements online last week to meet the girl for sex at a St. Paul hotel, authorities say. He texted questions to the man, asking about his daughter’s sexual experience, the kinds of gifts she might like, and whether he could watch her try on bikinis and lingerie in dressing rooms if he committed to buying her the items, according to legal documents. It wasn’t until the Chaska attorney showed up at the hotel just before 11 a.m. last Wednesday that Lichtenwalter discovered that the presumed father he’d been talking to was actually an undercover agent conducting an underage sex-sting for Homeland Security.”

Stribber Mike Hughlett reports, “A New Hope company and its two owners have been charged with running an illegal sales scheme on Amazon that collected more than $15 million from consumers over the past year. Jessie Conners Tieva and Matthew Tieva, and their company Sellers Playbook, were named in a recent complaint filed in federal court by the Federal Trade Commission and the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office. The company and the Tievas have no affiliation with Amazon. Rather, they were promoting a business model for merchandising products on Amazon.com’s third-party sales platform. … During the three-day workshops, Sellers Playbook tried to upsell customers to more expensive systems costing $6,997 to $32,997.”

Says Mike Berardino in the PiPress, “Less than a week into August, the Twins already have passed first basemen Joe Mauer and Logan Morrison through waivers, according to a person with direct knowledge. Had either player been claimed — and, in Mauer’s case, granted his approval — the team awarded the claim would have been responsible for the remaining salary on those players’ contracts. … Mauer entered Monday’s play hitting .275 with three home runs, a .357 on-base percentage that was the second-lowest of his career and a .367 slugging percentage that ranked last among his 15 big-league seasons.”

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